The blackcap, sometimes referred to as the northern nightingale, is a distinctive greyish warbler, the male has a black cap, and the female black cap has a chestnut one. Its delightful fluting song has earned it the name ‘northern nightingale’. Although primarily a summer visitor birds from Germany and north-east Europe are increasingly spending the winter in the UK.
Since the 1960s, the number of blackcaps which spend winter in the UK has grown and grown. It’s no longer a rare sight to see them in your garden in the middle of winter.
Just what are they doing? Surely blackcaps should be heading for warmer climes? After all, the UK’s no place for a warbler in winter…
We’ve known for a while that the blackcaps that come to Blighty for winter tend to have been hatched or breed in southern Germany. We found that out from ringing, where birds are fitted with a uniquely-numbered, lightweight metal ring which can be read and reported if they’re found or caught again – extract taken from RSPB.
Images by CRUSH Photography©