308 Moustached Warbler
(Acrocephalus melanopogon)


12-13cm. The Moustached Warbler is quite similar to Sedge Warbler, yet distinctive when seen well. Is marginally larger and more compact. Often hops on ground or near water, frequently flicks tail and raises it slightly. Differs from Sedge Warbler in: short primary projection (at most a third of tertials, two-thirds on Sedge): whiter supercilium, which is squarer-ended and broader at rear; more uniformly dark crown (can appear unstreaked brownish-black in field) and cheeks, lower edge of cheeks with hint of narrow black moustachial stripe; reddish-brown tone in fresh plumage (spring), especially on rump, nape, neck- and breast-sides; whiter underparts (not buffy yellow-white).


In Hungary the Moustached Warbler breeds in small number in large reed-mace beds and extensive, reed beds with reed-mace. The breeding population concentrates at Lake Fertő, Lake Velence, The Kis-Balaton, The Kiskunság and the Hortobágy. The Hungarian population has been slightly decreasing during the past few years, despite the increasing tendency in certain regions such as the Hortobágy. Migrant. Arrives early in spring (first half of March), whereas autumn migration lasts from mid-August until the end of October. During these periods it appears in reedbeds where it otherwise does not breed.

308 Moustached Warbler pic

© Graphics by Szabolcs Kókay

Source: 1) Lovászi Péter (editor): Javasolt különleges madárvédelmi területek Magyarországon, Magyar Madártani és Természetvédelmi Egyesület, 2002; 2) BirdLife International:IUCN Red List for birds. Species factsheet; 3) Králl Attila, Nagy Károly: Fontos Madárélőhelyek Magyarországon (Területek, kritériumok és minősítő fajok) MME Monitoring Központ, 2007; 4) Szabolcs Kókay bird illustrations; 5) www.hungarianbirdwatching.com bird descriptions and checklists, 2004-2012; 6) Lars Svensson et al.: Collins Bird Guide: The Most Complete Guide to the Birds of Britain and Europe 2nd Edition, Harper Collins, 2010; 7) MME Nomenclator Bizottság: Nomenclator avium Hungariae. An annotated list of the birds of Hungary. Magyar Madártani és Természetvédelmi Egyesület, 2008