Citrine Wagtail

This species is defined as a Review Species. Please submit your records of this species via our record submission page.

Scientific Name: Motacilla citreola
Malay Name: Pipit-Batu Kepala Kuning
Chinese Name: 黄头鹡鸰

Widespread across breeding range from Europe to Asia, wintering range includes India and southeastern Asia.

Polytypic. Subspecies are: citreola, calcarata.

Size: 16.5-20 cm

Compared to Eastern Yellow Wagtail and Grey Wagtail, key feature to look out for in non-breeding individuals is the supercilium wrapping around ear coverts and connecting to throat, creating the appearance of a distinct, isolated "cheek patch".

Similar looking species: Eastern Yellow Wagtail, Grey Wagtail

Habitat: Marshes, fields, and coastal habitats, prefers wet habitats.

Behaviour/Ecology: Similar to other wagtails, forages on ground and wags tail while moving. Can be spotted in flight with undulating flight.

Local Status: Very rare vagrant.

Conservation Status: Least Concern (BirdLife International 2019)

Past accepted records in our database:

Migrant bar chart (see more bar charts):

BirdLife International. (2019). Motacilla citreola. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2019. Accessed on 1 January 2023