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  • Writer's pictureDavid Darrell-Lambert

A chiffchaff

Today again I am at Thorpe Park. As I walk along beside the footpath I hear the very distinct call of TristIs Chiffchaff. Unlike the Common Chiffchaff these Siberian Chiffchaff have a pip of a call. This time I didn’t have any sound recording equipment with me so only managed a short video of a bush without seeing the bird. Well I could see a wing and part of the underside of the bird and then it was gone!

Talking to David Campbell he suggested this was a rare bird in Surrey. I’ve seen a few before and found three in London so didn’t think too much about it. So roll on one month, I am back at Thorpe Park and I stumble on the bird again but this time I get few photos of it and manage a great sound recording of it. The bird lacks the dull brightness (can I say that? doesn’t a dull brightness cancel each other out? No?) of our Common Chiffchaff and has a more pronounced supercilium compared to them. The underparts were also cleaner lacking the dusky marking that Common Chiffchaff often show. When it was in the cover and obscured from the sun it looks very different being a milky brown above slightly cold and sometimes described as milky tea colour. To me they look a bit like a Booted Warbler in terms of colouration. Either way very nice looking as this colour contrasts nicely against the whiter underparts. Enjoy the photos and the sound recordings that I managed of it.

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