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Common name Garden warbler
Scientific name Sylvia borin
Type Forest birds
Status Migrator

Small bird (about 14 cm or 5.5 in), physically similar to other warblers but with a much more discreet plumage. Greyish brown back and head, pale ocher underparts. Slightly yellowish breast and flanks. Grey collar on the neck, short and thick bill. It has a thin ring of light colour around the eye. In general, quite uniform and inconspicuous plumage.


Woodland environment and Scrubland

Where it lives

Species linked to forest vegetation in cool and humid areas, usually in groves and deciduous forests such as Portuguese oak groves. Also present in pine forests, shrub hedges, riverside forests, parks and gardens with abundant weeds, reed beds, poplar groves, humid countryside and shady and dense areas in general.

How it lives

Species present in the province only during its migratory passage. Trans-Saharan, the Garden Warbler spends the winter in tropical Africa. It breeds in the north of Spain from April, making two annual layings of 2 to 6 eggs. Nest in bushes. Insectivore that also consumes fruits in autumn and winter (figs and berries).

Where it can be seen in Malaga

Species difficult to detect for being habitually among the weeds, but frequent throughout the province during the migratory passage. It can be watched almost anywhere in Malaga: mouths of streams and coastal rivers, parks and gardens of towns and cities and, inland, in shady areas and groves. In the Great Path it is present in stage 23, among others. The orchards and streams with wild fig trees are good observation areas.

Curious facts

The Latin name of this warbler makes reference to the Genoese name (“borin”) with which a bird was known that was believed to accompany the cows (from Latin, “bos”). It is also known as "becca-figo", or "fig pecker". That is because this bird, frequent in groves where there are fig trees, is very fond of this fruit, with which it usually coincides during its migration. It is also common in gardens, which is why in English this bird is called “Garden Warbler”.

Similar birds
Wintering Summer Resident Migration