A rather dull-coloured bird, Hume’s leaf-warbler (Phylloscopus humei) has pale greyish-green upperparts, with one or two whitish bars extending across the wings (3) and dull off-white underparts. The crown is grey, a yellowish-white stripe extends above the eye, and it has a short, dark bill (2). Male and female Hume’s leaf-warblers are similar in appearance (3).
Most easily identified by its call, Hume’s leaf-warbler is described as a noisy bird which produces a short, penetrating ‘tzz wip’ (3). It is also said to have a song which sounds like a buzzing insect, which lasts several seconds before fading (2).
Hume’s leaf-warbler is an insectivorous bird, with a diet that comprises mainly small arthropods. As such, the species’ abundance is tightly correlated with the abundance of arthropods in the area (5).
The nest of Hume’s leaf-warbler is built on the ground by the female, using dry grass and lined with thin grass and some hair. The nest, which takes 4 to 8 days to construct, is situated 15 to 50 metres apart from the nests of other Hume’s leaf-warblers. From four to seven eggs are laid between the end of May and mid-July, which are then incubated by the female for 11 to 14 days. Both the male and female are responsible for feeding the juveniles, which are ready to fledge at 11 to 15 days old (6).
In August or September, after breeding in the northern parts of its range, Hume’s leaf-warbler migrates to south and south-east Asia (6), a journey which typically covers less than 2,000 kilometres (7). Here Hume’s leaf-warbler will remain before travelling northwards again in May (6).
Hume’s leaf-warbler occurs in Asia, from Iraq and Iran eastwards through India to China and Vietnam, and as far north as Russia. It may occasionally be sighted in Egypt and in Europe, as far west as the United Kingdom (4).
With an extremely large range and a large, stable population, Hume’s leaf-warbler is not currently considered to be threatened, and therefore at present there are no known conservation measures in place to protect this species (4).
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