Emei Leaf Warbler

Emei Leaf Warbler
Emei Leaf Warbler Phylloscopus emeiensis, Sichuan, China, elev. 1540 m (5,050 ft.), May. (Craig Brelsford)
Emei Leaf Warbler
Emei Leaf Warbler, Sichuan, May. (Craig Brelsford)

Emei Leaf Warbler Phylloscopus emeiensis is Chinese breeding endemic (southeast Sichuan, northeast Yunnan, northern Guizhou, and northwest Guangdong). Non-breeding range poorly known; probably includes Southeast Asia. HABITAT Breeds in temperate and subtropical broadleaved forests between 1000-2000 m (3,280-6,560 ft.). A mid-sized, boldly marked Phylloscopus with double wingbars and prominent yellowish supercilium. Distinguished from Claudia’s Leaf Warbler P. claudiae by less distinct crown pattern; lateral crown-stripes of Claudia’s are blackish posteriorly, not grey-green, as in Emei, and median crown-stripe of Claudia’s is bolder and more contrasting than Emei. Claudia’s also has a very different song and different wing-flicking habit; Emei flicks both wings quickly and simultaneously, not one at a time, as Claudia’s. Claudia’s has more distinct white areas on inner webs of outer rectrices (usually visible only in hand). Kloss’s Leaf Warbler P. ogilviegranti has even more strongly defined crown pattern and is brighter yellow and green. BARE PARTS Bill black above, orange below; feet pinkish. VOICE Song a simple, raspy trill, tji-tji-tji-tji, lasting 3-4 seconds and reminiscent of Arctic Warbler P. borealis; more complex songs of Claudia’s and Kloss’s employ much sweeter whistles. Two-note call much softer than Claudia’s. — Craig Brelsford


Daniel Bengtsson served as chief ornithological consultant for Craig Brelsford’s Photographic Field Guide to the Birds of China, from which this species description is drawn.

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