jueves, 9 de abril de 2015

Willow Warbler

 Willow Warbler (Phylloscopus trochilus)

The persistent calling gave away the presence of this Willow Warbler (Phylloscopus trochilus),  as it flitted among the Rumex lunaria bushes surrounding irrigation ponds in Las Martelas (Los Llanos de Aridane). The soft, disyllabic sound stood out against the background twittering of resident species...for this warbler is a migrant to the Canaries.

The only photos I managed to get are of poor quality, but allow many of the differences between the Willow Warbler and the locally-abundant Canary Islands Chiffchaff (P. canariensis) to be appreciated; the former species has an overall longer shape, generally brighter plumage, paler bill and legs, a more conspicuous supercilium, and whiter underparts. Unfortunately, the longer primary projection of trochilus cannot be appreciated in these images.

According to the Field Guide to the Birds of Macaronesia (E. García-del-Rey, Lynx Edicions), the Willow Warbler is a P1 migrant, with a "high" probability of being observed during migratory periods, and with records from all the Canary Islands. The present bird is one of a handful of sightings of the species on La Palma, but how many migrant Willow Warblers are overlooked every year?.

Willow Warbler (Phylloscopus trochilus)

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