Aquatic Warbler - Waterrietzanger

Aquatic Warbler


Acrocephalus paludicola

Pictures: Teus Luijendijk


10 September 2000, Maasvlakte ZH

4 September 2004, Katwijk aan Zee ZH


10 September 2000, Maasvlakte ZH

Aquatic Warblers are rare but regular in The Netherlands. They turn up in August-September and have a profound preference for sedge Carex. Observation is usually difficult as the birds skulk in thick coverage.
Needless to say that a report of an Aquatic Warbler on the middle of a bone-dry area as De Maasvlakte was met with both astonishment and enthusiasm by Dutch birders. This bird stayed mostly in a 2x3 m patch of grass but sometimes came out to forage in low bushes of herbs nearby. It was here that I managed to make some video shots.

   Aquatic Warbler  -  Waterrietzanger  Acrocephalus paludicola   probably juvenile;  videograbs (10x), contrast slightly enhanced.
   Maasvlakte ZH, The Netherlands, 10 September 2000.


4 September 2004, Katwijk aan Zee ZH

And this bird turned up just as we were doing a migration count from the observation post nicknamed 'de Puinhoop', in Katwijk aan Zee. Apparently it came flying in from a little reed bed further north, where berry pickers were active harvesting. As it slowly emerged from the Rose shrub here, I immediately saw a broad creamy crown stripe and yelled "Aquatic Warbler!!", leaving everyone present astonished. Fortunately the bird gave some good views to all birders present, before it (later) vanished into thicker undergrowth.
Before it disappeared, I just aimed my camera on every movement I saw in the scrub and distilled these record shots from the recordings:

  Aquatic Warbler  -  Waterrietzanger  Acrocephalus paludicola   probably juvenile;  videograbs (20x).
  'de Puinhoop', Katwijk aan Zee ZH, The Netherlands, 4 September 2004.


Copyright ©Teus Luijendijk 2000-2004