Whinchat

      Saxicola rubetra

      Information

      A typical meadow bird in Switzerland, the Whinchat inhabits flower-rich, diverse and extensively managed meadows. It requires little more than a month for breeding. In intensively managed meadows, however, it does not have that much time since ground nests are regularly lost due to frequent mowing. Therefore, today the Whinchat has practically disappeared from the Swiss lowlands. It is becoming difficult for it even in upland areas.

      Voice

      Status (in CH)
      regular, common breeder and migrant, extremely rare winter visitor
      Annual cycle
      The bar on the top line indicates during which seasons the species can be observed regularly in Switzerland. There can be great seasonal fluctuations of numbers. The middle bar indicates the typical migration seasons of a species. The bottom bar indicates the period during which the species normally breeds. As a rule it spans the period from egg-laying to fledging of the young.
      Annual cycle
      Annual cycle

      Facts

      Population size in Switzerland (Pairs)
      7'000 - 9'000 (2013-2016)
      Migration behaviour
      long-distance migrant
      Diurnal/nocturnal migrant
      Nocturnal migrant
      Length (cm)
      12-14
      wing span (cm)
      24-25
      Weight (g)
      16-24
      Nest site
      ground
      Food
      insects, spiders
      Group
      Chats and Thrushes
      Habitat
      meadows and pasture
      Distribution
      Distribution
      Distribution