Reed Warbler Acrocephalus scirpaceus   [Hermann, 1804]

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Order: Passeriformes Family: Sylviidae
BTO Codes: RW, REEWA EURING No: 12510
Number in Britain: 130 thousand Pairs (Summer)
Conservation Status:
UK: GREEN
European: Not a species of concern
Global: (Details)
Status in UK: (A)  Migrant Breeder, Passage Visitor
Subspecies: scirpaceus recorded in Britain (of 3 subsp. in the world)
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Length: 13 cm Wingspan: 19 cm Weight: M/F: 13 g    
Scientific name from: Gr.: akros=pointed + kephale=head and L.: scirpus=a reed + =aceus=resembling
World Distribution: BREEDS: Europe, Near East & c Asia, WINTERS: tropical Africa
Habitat: Reedbed, scrub
Diet: Insects and spiders also small snails, often at middle heights in reeds, rushes
TitBit: In many birds, eye colour changes with age - in Reed Warblers birds have a charcoal iris in their first year but an olive-brown one as adults; young birds also have spots on their tongues (as many other species do), presumably to help guide feeding parent.  
Identification Tips:
  Images from IBC or search flickr
  Videos from IBC
  Sound from xeno-canto
Crossley ID photos BTO ID Workshop

Population and Distribution

Population Trend: BirdTrends   
Regional Trends: England   English Regions
Distribution: Atlas Mapstore   
British Population Size:
    Summer: 130 thousand Pairs in 2009
    First Record: Essex, 1785
    Latest Survey: Newson, S.E. et al. (2008) Journal of Applied Ecology 45:1330-1338
    Conservation Status: GREEN
   Previous Assessments: 2002-2007 GREEN     1996-2001 GREEN  
   Races of Concern: scirpaceus GREEN
Habitat Occupancy (in the Breeding Season):
    Most frequent in: Reedbed
    Also common in: Estuaries
    And found in: Along Rivers, Lakes
Relative Frequency in Each Habitat:
Migration routes: Map of foreign ringing recoveries  and summary map from Time to Fly (in pop-up windows)
European Population Size:
    Summer: 2.6 to 4.5 million pairs   (Trend in Numbers)
Population Assesment from Birds in Europe
Distribution in Europe mapped by the EBCC Atlas
Listed on the Appendices/Schedules of: Bern(III), Bonn(II)
Survey Results: Results from BirdTrack

Breeding and Survival

Egg Size: 18 x 14 mm Egg Weight: 1.8 g (of which 5 % is shell)
Number of Nest Records: 609
Clutch Size: 4 eggs 3.88 ± 0.69 (2 - 6) N = 3455
Incubation: 12- 12 days 11.73 ± 0.91 (10 - 13.5) N = 3453   by the: Male + Female
Fledging: 12 - 13days 11.68 ± 0.76 (10 - 12.5) N = 3814 as: Altricial, naked
Source:
British Trust for Ornithology (2005) Nest Record Scheme data
First Clutches Laid: 10 Jun (15 May - 21 Jul)
Number of Broods: 1-2
See trends in Breeding Productivity
Number Ringed: Annual Totals
Adult Survival: 0.470 ± 0.010       
Juvenile Survival: No data
Age at First Breeding: 1 year Typical Lifespan: 2 years
Maximum Recorded Age: 12 years 11 months 21 days (set in 2001)
Read a summary of Ringing Recoveries

Biometrics

Ring Size: A
Wing Length Adult: 65.6 ± 1.8 Range 63 - 69 mm, N =33113
Juvenile: 64.7 ± 1.8 62 - 67 mm, N =33342
Male: 66.4 ± 1.7 64 - 69 mm, N =10905
Female: 64.7 ± 1.6 62 - 67 mm, N =9169
Weight Adult: 11.52 ± 1.00 Range 10.20 - 13.40 g , N =27827
Juvenile: 11.37 ± 1.55 9.90 - 13.70 g , N =28300
Male: 11.33 ± 0.70 10.30 - 12.50 g , N =8909
Female: 11.76 ± 1.20 10.10 - 14.00 g , N =7595
Source:
British Trust for Ornithology (2005) Ringing Scheme data

Other Names

Eurasian Reed Warbler
Gaelic: Ceileiriche-cuilc Welsh: Telor y Cyrs
Danish: Rřrsanger Dutch: Kleine karekiet
Finnish: Rytikerttunen French: Rousserolle effarvatte
German: Teichrohrsänger Hungarian: Cserrego nádiposzáta
Icelandic: Sefsöngvari Irish: Ceolaire Giolcaí
Italian: Cannaiola Norwegian: Rřrsanger
Polish: Trzcinniczek zwyczajny Portuguese: Rouxinol-pequeno-dos-caniços
Spanish: Carricero común Swedish: Rörsĺngare

For More Information...

Books and Monographs:
   Calvert, M. 2005 Reed Warblers at Rostherne Mere English Nature, Peterborough [598.915 CAL]
   Brown, P.E & Davies, M.G. 1949 Reed Warblers Foy Publications, East Molesey, Surrey [598.915 BRO]
   Leisler, B. & Schulze-Hagen, K. 2011 The reed warblers: diversity in a uniform family KNNV Publishing, Zeist [598.915 LEI]
See Also:
Find scientific papers on Google Scholar or Scirus by clicking the icon
Wikipedia entry
HBW account (subscription required)
BirdLife species page
Recent sightings and information from BirdGuides