|Singing male Wood Warbler Phylloscopus sibilatrix, Alexandra Park, London, 12 May 2012.|
|The bird occasionally showed well as it clambered about the mid and upper storeys of its favoured oak.|
As well as its evocative trilling song (I recorded the above unedited sequence on my iPhone), the bird also uttered the alternative, somewhat melancholy, piu-piu-piu series of notes. At one point it gave occasional single piu call notes, the first time I have heard this as a 'solo' vocalisation, and a good learning opportunity as a potential way to pick up non-singing migrants in future.
Wood Warbler has become something of a rarity in the London Area over the years, mirroring the national decline of the breeding population. Whereas in 1994 there was one breeding pair, 23 singing birds on spring passage and 20 more in autumn, the total number of sites where the species was recorded during the five-year period 2004-2008 were 1, 10, 16, 8 and 7 respectively (London Bird Reports passim).
|Here the bird can be seen successfully reducing the park's caterpillar population by one.|