Wednesday, July 16, 2014

White Wagtail (Motacilla Alba)

(20 cm.) Wags tail, patchy white and black plumage.

The White Wagtail is a less colorful, but more often seen cousin of the Grey Wagtail. Like that species, the While Wagtail is a member of the wagtail family, “Moticillidae”. The White Wagtail is a “pied” species, meaning that its plumage is made up of just white and black colors. It is a handsomely patterned species, however.

Like its cousin, the Grey Wagtail, the White Wagtail prefers the wet environments of rivers and streams, but it is adaptable and will also be found near farms, gardens and open fields.

This is a widespread species that can be found in Africa, Europe and Asia. In China, the White Wagtail can be found everywhere except for a small patch in the western part of the country. During the breeding season, this species can be found throughout the northern half of China. It is a resident species as far north as Shandong Province and throughout the southern half of the country.

The White Wagtail is much hardier than other wagtail species, and it can be found far further north in winter than other members of its family.

White Wagtail (Photo by Andreas Trepte,

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