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Tuesday, 18 April 2017

Moseley Heath, 18th April 2017

I didn't really have time to do any birding today but couldn't run the risk of missing the reported Iberian Chiffchaff at Moseley Heath so spent a couple of hours there early this afternoon. The bird sang quite frequently when the sun came out but was surprisingly elusive and difficult to get a good view of. I hold my hands up to only having heard/seen one Iberian Chiffchaff before, in Kent several years ago, and have better things to do than spend my evenings pouring over tapes of variations of song, which probably wouldn't make me any likelier to make a bold statement, but I was taken aback by how far removed the bird's song was from what I understand the species to sound like. Generally a slow wavering trill and a few chiff/chaff elements, at the end of some refrains it sounded rather like a Willow Warbler (although it definitely is not a Willow Warbler). I will very happily bow to the judgement of anyone who has more experience of Ibe Chiff or gone more in depth than I have. It's certainly an interesting-looking bird anyway. Also noted were three Little Egrets, a Cetti's Warbler, a Kingfisher, a Willow Warbler, Whitethroat, etc. A Swallow flew over the A3 at Tolworth.

chiffchaff sp.