Yellow Wagtail: Identification, Migration, and Feeding Tips

Yellow Wagtail: Identification, Migration, and Feeding Tips

The Yellow Wagtail (Motacilla flava) is a small passerine bird and is part of the Wagtail family (Motacillidae). It is a bird that visits us between March and September, and then it migrates for the winter to a warmer climate, south of the Sahara, Africa. 

Yellow Wagtails are a lovely shade of yellow and green, and they have bright yellow underparts, an olive-brown back, and streaks of grey and yellow on its wings and a medium sized tail, which they are known to wag from time to time; this implies its name (wagtail).

It is known to have a cheerful call “tsweep” which is most common and its song is a simple repetition of this call.

They are a bird with very slender legs and they spend a lot of the time walking and running along the ground near riverbanks, marshland and meadows and they can often be seen near fields of horses or cattle, feeding on invertebrates, such as beetles and flies.

The Yellow Wagtail

Prosecto Insectivorous contains invertebrates and is a year round soft-food that’s perfect for insect eating birds as it’s packed with protein. Also, it is blended with oils and real Baker’s honey. It can be fed from the ground, bird table or a soft-food feeder.

Over the last few decades, the numbers have declined and the yellow wagtail is on the red list for birds of conservation concern. According to the British Trust for Ornithology (BTO) a change in agriculture could be to blame, but as it is a migrant, problem overseas cannot be ruled out.

So this summertime, keep a watchful eye out for one of these delightful birds - if you spot one it will be a rare and wonderful treat as they are so very scarce.

Written by Tina Jakes



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