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Order Song birds/Passeriformes, Family Thrushes/Turdidae

Rufous-tailed Scrub-robin/Cercotrichas galactotes - Adult

L 15-17 cm. Breeds in dry, rather open country with dense shrubbery, hedges, fruit orchards; fond of tamarisk, prickly-pear cactus, pistachio trees; often near human habitation. Summer visitor (mid May-Sep), winters S of Sahara.
IDENTIFICATION: Brownish above and dirty white below, with long redbrown tail with black and white tips to outer feathers. Bold head markings, with white supercilium and narrow dark eye-stripe plus often dark lateral crown-stripe. Spends much time on ground. Often spreads tail and jerks it upwards, then closes and slowly lowers it. Also flicks and opens wings. Sexes and ages alike. - Variation: In Spain, NW Africa, Egypt and Israel (ssp. galactotes) the back is warm brown and contrasts little with tail, and breast is buff, whereas birds in Greece and Turkey (syriacus) have slightly more greybrown back, have grey tone to breast and flanks and have more contrasted head markings.
VOICE: Call a hard tongue-clicking and a soft straight whistle, ‘üh’; also a peculiar, insect-like buzzing sound, ‘bzzzzz’. Song thrush-like and clear with rather melancholy tone, may be likened to lethargic song of Song Thrush (short phrases, short pauses), but higher and more chirping.

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