Family Leaf-warblers (Phylloscopidae)

Least Concern

Western Bonelli's Warbler (Phylloscopus bonelli)


French: Pouillot de Bonelli German: Berglaubsänger Spanish: Mosquitero papialbo

Sylvia Bonelli


, 1819,



Formerly treated as conspecific with P. orientalis (which see). Occasional hybridization with P. sibilatrix recorded. Monotypic.


SW & C Europe from Iberian Peninsula N to France and S Germany, occasionally farther N#R, and E to Austria, Slovenia and Italy, also in NW Africa from N Morocco E to NW Tunisia. Winters in W African Sahel zone from S Mauritania and Senegal E to N Nigeria, N Cameroon and Chad.

Descriptive notes

11·5 cm; 7–11·5 g. A medium-sized, pale brown, plain-faced leaf-warbler with bright rump and bright fringes of wing and tail feathers. Has generally pale... read more


Song, from within tree canopy and while actively moving, given during spring migration and breeding... read more


Breeds in warm deciduous woodland comprising oak (Quercus), birch (Betula), beech... read more

Food and feeding

Food generally small insects and other invertebrates, including aphids (Aphidoidea), moths (Lepidoptera), bugs (Hemiptera), flies (Diptera... read more


End Apr to Aug; one brood, exceptionally two. Monogamous. Territorial. Pair formation begins with female entering male’s territory... read more


Migratory. All populations move S to spend non-breeding season in narrow acacia belt along S edge... read more

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened. Common or locally common. One of the commonest or most widespread of the leaf-warblers in C & S Europe in pine and birch woods. Total population... read more

Recommended citation

Clement, P. & Christie, D.A. (2020). Western Bonelli's Warbler (Phylloscopus bonelli). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from on 23 January 2020).