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Aquatic Warbler - BirdForum Opus

Photo © by callatis
Bucharest, Romania, May 2011
Acrocephalus paludicola


11.5-13cm (4½-5 in)
Heavily streaked brown back, pale underparts with variable streaking, whitish supercilium and crown stripe and the bill is strong and pointed.
Sexes similar.
Juveniles lack streaking on the breast and flanks.

Similar Species

Juvenile Sedge Warbler, which has a cream-buff centre to the crown.

A juvenile being ringed
Photo © by dipper_wales
Kenfig Nature Reserve, Wales, August 1993


Uncommon to rare over most of breeding range. Breeds from Lithuania, eastern Poland, Belarus and Ukraine east to Central Asia and also at very scattered localities in central and western Poland, eastern Germany and Hungary. Has bred in France, Belgium and Netherlands, Slovakia, Austria and Italy.

A summer visitor which leaves breeding areas and moving westwards or south-westwards in August-September to occur in Netherlands, Belgium, southern England and western France before flying south to winter in tropical West Africa; possibly half the world population winters in swamps in Senegal.

Most occurring in north-western Europe in autumn are juveniles. In Britain 20-40 occur most years with the majority on the south coast, particularly in the south-west, but also recorded north to Shetland. On spring passage returns to Europe late-April to mid-May and by a more easterly route, rarely recorded in north-western Europe.

Vagrants recorded in Ireland and the Scandinavian countries, Greece and Turkey, Malta, Azores and Canary Islands.


This is a monotypic species[1].


Breeds in swampy sedge meadows with low vegetation. Will use reedbeds and bushes or trees near water when on passage.



The diet includes insects, caterpillars and grubs, and spiders.


The clutch consisists of 3-5 brown eggs, heavily spotted with yellowy-grey. The nest made is made from reeds and placed in low vegetation on marshy ground or in a clump of sedge in shallow water.



  1. Clements, J. F., T. S. Schulenberg, M. J. Iliff, S. M. Billerman, T. A. Fredericks, B. L. Sullivan, and C. L. Wood. 2019. The eBird/Clements Checklist of Birds of the World: v2019. Downloaded from http://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/download/
  2. Birdcheck
  3. ArKive
  4. Collins Field Guide 5th Edition
  5. Collins Bird Guide ISBN 0 00 219728 6
  6. Homepage of the Aquatic Warbler Conservation Team

Recommended Citation

External Links

GSearch checked for 2020 platform.