The Rock Pipits are closely related to the Tree and Meadow Pipits and are rather similar in appearance, however are larger and have darker legs. It has dusky outer tail feathers, unlike the pure white of most pipits. It can also be distinguished by its smoke-coloured plumage, pale eye-ring and dark breast, although the breast streaks are poorly defined. The upperparts are dark olive with buff underparts. It has a length of 16 cm and a wingspan of 25 cm, with a weight of 24 g. The Rock Pipit is mainly dark brown above and heavily streaked buff below. It has pale grey outer tail feathers and a longish dark bill.

Habitat and Distribution

Western Rock Pipits found in Ireland, Great Britain, northwest France and the Channel Islands. The Eastern Rock Pipit ranges from the Scandinavian Peninsula and northwestern Russia to southern Spain and northwestern Africa. Rock Pipits tend to be found along rocky coasts, whereas Water Pipits favour damp grassland.


This species is insectivorous like its relatives.

Calls and Songs

Its call is an explosive fit. The song, as in many pipits, is a series of `blocks` of repeated more or less shrill cheeping single or double notes; it ends on a trill.