Blackcaps lead the chorus

Blackcap-male-Shropshire-2020-2-Keith-Offord-lo-res.jpgThere are inevitable compensations to the current situation. For the first time in many years we are able to keep a daily log of what is happening around our patch and in the last few weeks, bird song has been dominated by Blackcaps, the males staking out their territories with their cheery lilting whistle. Here is one photographed this morning in the wood. I am reminded that this week we would have been discussing both Blackcaps and Garden Warblers on the Birdsong and Calls course at Higham. There are occasions when Blackcap can sound more like a Garden Warbler - particularly at the start of the song before they 'get going' and the tone changes quite signficantly from a rather more racy, scratchy warble through to the much louder flutey whistle. Our first Garden Warbler was also singing today with its longer, babbling, gurgling performance.
Separately, note also the lower white half eye ring on a Blackcap which helps the eye merge with the crown.