This is undoubtedly the most numerous migrant wintering in Africa. The breeding birds are from West of Ireland round almost to Alaska and breeding well to the North but not in Southern Europe.
These are variable in colour but the birds are generally pale olive-brown or olive-green above and yellowish underneath. They have a good clear supercilium. These birds have a very characteristic song with a 'dying fall' - in pleasant tinkling ending with a descending trill.
In open scrubby areas these birds may be very common with up to five territories per hectare often recorded - males are often polygynous. They all winter South of the Sahara. Their wings are longer and more pointed than the Chiffchaffs which do not migrate so far. Populations have fallen recently but there are about 2,500,000 territories in Britain and Ireland.
Abundant little warbler over much of Eurasia.
Length 110 mm Closed wing 65 mm Weight 9 gms
A Bird On! Sketch by Chris Mead
Copyright © 1996 by Jacobi Jayne & Company and Chris Mead