Chiffchaff perched on a thorn plant (c) Tim Donovan


Chiffchaffs are extremely active birds, constantly flicking their tails and wings while feeding. They favour small insects, including caterpillars, gnats and midges, that are foraged from high in the canopy. They also catch flies in mid-air and hover to pick insects from under leaves. Chiffchaffs will only sing in trees more than 5m high. These small dumpy warblers are summer visitors to the UK and are scarce in Scotland. They are found across Eurasia and parts of Africa, favouring woodlands and areas with a good degree of tree cover.

Scientific name: Phylloscopus collybita

Rank: Species

Common names:

Common chiffchaff

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The Chiffchaff can be found in a number of locations including: Asia, China, Europe, Indian subcontinent, Mediterranean, United Kingdom, Wales, Ynys-hir nature reserve. Find out more about these places and what else lives there.


The following habitats are found across the Chiffchaff distribution range. Find out more about these environments, what it takes to live there and what else inhabits them.


Discover what these behaviours are and how different plants and animals use them.

Additional data source: Animal Diversity Web


  1. Life
  2. Animals
  3. Vertebrates
  4. Birds
  5. Perching birds
  6. Phylloscopidae
  7. Leaf warblers
  8. Chiffchaff


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