Locustella certhiola — Overview

Rusty-rumped Grasshopper-warbler learn more about names for this taxon

IUCN threat status:

Least Concern (LC)


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Pallas's grasshopper warbler

For the Phylloscopus warbler species, see Pallas's warbler.

The Pallas's grasshopper warbler (Locustella certhiola) is an Old World warbler in the grass warbler genus Locustella. It breeds in east Asia. It is migratory, wintering from India east to Indonesia.

This small passerine bird is found in tall grass with some thicker vegetation, usually close to water in bogs or wet meadows. From 4 to 7 eggs are laid in a nest on the ground in grass. This species is a very rare vagrant to western Europe. One of the best places to see this skulking species as a vagrant is Fair Isle, Shetland; for a species that only rarely appears in western Europe, it can be found there with some regularity. This has made it a sought after species among UK "twitchers".

This is a medium-sized warbler. The adult has a streaked brown back, whitish grey underparts, unstreaked except on the undertail. The sexes are identical, as with most warblers, but young birds are yellower below. Like most warblers, it is insectivorous. It is very similar to the common grasshopper warbler, but is slightly larger, has white tips to the tail and tertial feathers, and a warmer brown rump. The white tips are the reason for its colloquial, mnenomic name of "PG Tips".

This is a skulky species which is very difficult to see except sometimes when singing. It creeps through grass and low foliage.

The song is not the mechanical insect-like reeling produced by the common grasshopper warbler and some other Locustella warblers, but an inventive Acrocephalus-like melody.

This bird was named after the German zoologist Peter Simon Pallas.

Note that the sixth edition of Clements checklist [2] refers to this species as "Pallas's warbler", a name more commonly used for Phylloscopus proregulus.


  1. ^ BirdLife International (2012). "Locustella certhiola". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved 26 November 2013. 
  2. ^ Clements, James F. (2007) The Clements checklist of birds of the world Cornell University Press ISBN 978-0-8014-4501-9


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