Rüppell's Warblers or Rueppell's Warblers
The Rüppell's Warbler (Sylvia rueppelli) is a typical warbler of the genus Sylvia. The species is named after the German zoologist and explorer Eduard Rüppell (1794-1884).
Distribution / Range
It breeds in Greece, Turkey and neighbouring islands. It is migratory, wintering in north east Africa. This is a rare vagrant to western Europe. The name is occasionally cited as "Rueppell's Warbler".
It is a typical "sylvia" warbler, similar in size but slimmer than Sardinian Warbler. The adults have a plain grey back and paler grey underparts. The bill is fine and pointed, with brown legs and red eyes. The striking male has a black head and, usually, a black throat, separated by a white malar streak ("moustache"). Females have a pale throat, and the head is grey rather than black. Their grey back has a brownish tinge. The song is a slower, deeper rattle than that of Sardinian Warbler.
Together with the Cyprus Warbler it forms a superspecies with dark throats, white malar streaks ("moustaches"), and light remiges fringes. This in turn is related to the species of Mediterranean and Middle East Sylvia warblers that have a naked eye-ring, namely the Subalpine Warbler, Sardinian Warbler and Ménétries's Warbler. Both groups have a white malar area, but this may not form a clear streak in the latter group; above the white, the heads of males are uniformly dark.(Helbig 2001, Jønsson & Fjeldså 2006)
These small insectivorous passerine birds are found in thick thorny shrubs where they build their nests and lay four to six eggs.
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