Saturday, 21 April 2007

Nettle Creeper - Whitethroat

The Common Whitethroat is another of the common warblers of the area that spends the winter in sub-Saharan Africa. I was pleased the see and hear them for the first time this year this morning. The old country name of Nettle Creeper well describes its habitat, just as its common name gives a good indication of its appearance. This species suffered a massive population drop of around 50% in 1969 and then by a further 50% over 5 the next five years. The reason for this was the drought in the Sahel region of Africa, highlighted by Sir Bob and Live Aid. Since then the population of Whitethroats has increased and may be getting up towards the pre-crash levels. Like most of the warblers it has a pleasant song, although is is a bit scratchy and lacks the musical quality of the Blackcap or Garden Warbler.

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