This is one of several Sylvia species that has distinct male and female plumages. Both sexes are mainly brown above and buff below, with chestnut fringes to the secondary remiges. The adult male has a grey head and a white throat. The female lacks the grey head, and the throat is duller.

Habitat and Distribution

The Whitethroat breeds throughout Europe and across much of temperate western Asia. This small passerine bird is strongly migratory, and winters in tropical Africa, Arabia and Pakistan. It is a bird of open country and cultivation.


Like most `warblers`, the Whitethroat is insectivorous, but will also take berries and other soft fruit.


They need bushes for nesting. The nest is built in low shrub or brambles, and 3-7 eggs are laid.

Calls and Songs

The Whitethroat's song is fast and scratchy, with a scolding tone. Their hoarse, nasal call sounds like wed-wed or woid-woid. The warning cry is long-pulled, rough tschehr which resembles that of the Dartford Warbler.