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A Chiffchaff

Tuesday, 12th September 2017

The Chiffchaff (Phylloscopus collybita) is a tiny leaf warbler, with olive-green and brown upperparts, white or very pale yellow underparts and their breast and flanks are yellow.
The head is olive-brown and they have a white eye-ring and a dark brown eye stripe. Their flight feathers and tails are brown with olive-green fringes.

The Chiffchaff is a migrant bird and will usually arrive in March and departs once the summer is over, around September time. However, over recent years increasing numbers of these small birds have been seen wintering in the UK, this may be due to our milder weather.

Our summer visitors are one of the first songbirds to arrive in spring to the UK. They can be identified by their distinctive call which is a simple two-syllables “chiff-chaff, chiff-chaff” the male will let his presence known by singing heartily from the treetops. The sound is almost identical to the willow warbler, which has a more melodic song and usually takes an expert to tell them apart.

The Chiffchaff is mostly a common and widespread bird and can be found in woodlands, parks, gardens and hedgerows.  Like other leaf warblers it is most at home in tree canopies, and will only breed where there are trees about, also the male likes to use them as singing posts.
This small species is insectivorous and therefore feeds mainly on insects and specialises in picking them off plants but rarely catches them in mid-air, it has been seen feeding on nectar from flowers and during the winter sometimes eats fruit and berries.

Prosecto Insectivorous

Prosecto insectivorous soft-food mix is a wholesome and nutritious mix rich in natural calcium, lower in iron and contains fruit. It can be fed from a soft-food feeder or a sheltered bird table; it is also suitable for feeding in a small container at the base of shrubs or bushes for the more timid birds to feed.

They may not be frequent visitors to the garden and spotted rarely during the summer time; however, it remains important to put plenty of high-quality food out during the winter season as you never know one of these little birds might pop into your garden.

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