Bluethroat

Bluethroat

The Bluethroat is an overwintering species to Mallorca and whilst not a common one it is reliable if you know where to look. The race which overwinters is the white throated one that breeds in southern Europe and can also be seen on migration and only recently one was at La Gola. The Cuber reservoir often has a few but the most reliable site is the S’Albufera which has a few overwintering every year possibly even double figures. The best place is the viewing platform at the Depudora overlooking the marsh and whilst you normally need a scope to see them in the distance now and again they are visible at the top of the reeds close to the platform. In the south the best place is Salobrar de Campos where there are a few each winter but this is a big area to look.

Techincal description

The Bluethroat ( Luscinia sveica ) is a small Robin sized bird once thought to be a thrush but now classified as part of the chat family. It is a migratory species breeding in the northern hemisphere and overwintering mainly in Africa but a few in southern Europe. It is breeds in North America, Alaska, Asia where it is mainly found in tundra habitat breeding in wet birchwood and swampland nesting in tussocks or low down in bushes.However in Europe  it is relatively common and often found breeding in reedbeds so a very different habitat.

There are two subspecies which is the red spotted Bluethroat found mainly in the north and the white throated race which is mainly found in southern Europe .

The bluethroat is similar in size to the robin being 12-14 cm and is a dull brown above except for the black tail with red side patches and a strong white stripe. The mail has a bright blue bib with blacjk , white and russet borders with the centre spot being either white or russet depending on the race. Females of both species have just a black crescent on the throat which is cream and the juveniles are very plain being spotted brown.

Its nesting habits are to build a small nest of reed, dried grass and twigs very low down in either low bushes or tussocks where a clutch of five to seven eggs are laid.

Places the Bluethroat can be found at:

Different types of Birds in Mallorca