Conservation status: Amber
A brown, long-tailed bird, usually seen flying rapidly across the top of a reedbed. Males have black 'moustaches' rather than 'beards'. They are sociable and noisy , their 'ping' calls often being the first clue to their presence. They are particularly vulnerable to severe winters and their population has declined in recent years, making them an Amber List species.
Where to see them
Found only in reedbeds. May move away from breeding areas in winter.
When to see them
All year round
What they eat
Insects, insect larvae, spiders and seeds
|Europe||UK breeding*||UK wintering*||UK passage*|
|240,000-480,000 pairs||504-559 pairs||-||-|
- In the UK
- Mainly eastern and southern England
- In Europe
- Most of Europe apart from N Scandinavia
- Europe and Asia