Birds of Switzerland
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    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