Thursday, 16 June 2016

Chatting on the moors ...

June 2016

Whinchat (Saxicola rubetra)




The Whinchat (Saxicola rubetra) is a fairly common passage migrant, although rare summer visitor, to Sussex. Most birds pass through in late April and May, with some stragglers being recorded at coastal locations up to the end of May and even early June in some seasons. Despite there being apparently suitable breeding habitat in the county, they are very rare breeders in Sussex. In Britain, S. rubetra mainly breeds in northern and western upland areas with a few in Ireland. Whinchat numbers in Britain more than halved between 1995 and 2008, the cause(s) being unknown. The above images were recently taken on moorland in North Wales and show in descending order males (top and middle) and a female (bottom).

References:

Scott-Ham, M., 2014. Whinchat. The Birds of Sussex. Thetford: British Trust for Ornithology (BTO) Books on behalf of the Sussex Ornithological Society, pp. 516-517.

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