Widespread warbler of scrub and farmland in Europe and nearer parts of former USSR. This is a rather long-tailed bird with grey or grey-brown head, chestnut back and wings and white on the throat and outer tail feathers - a buff or pale vinous flush to the underparts. It has a rather simple song and an attractive parachuting song-flight.
Two slightly different races from the West and Eastern end of the range migrate to West and East Africa. In the West, populations were badly hit by the drought in the Sahel, just South of the Sahara, over the winter of 1968-69 when they went down by about 80%. Gradually increasing and doing well in recent years. Was probably more widespread in Britain and Ireland than any other warbler and may become so again. Current population level in Britain and Ireland probably almost up to 1,000,000 territories.
A long tailed and common warbler of scrubby areas.
The following Bird On! picture is available:
Whitethroat (35mm Colour Slide by Roger Tidman)
Length 140 mm Closed wing 72 mm Weight 15 gms
A Bird On! Sketch by Chris Mead
Copyright © 1996 by Jacobi Jayne & Company and Chris Mead