Eastern Yellow Wagtail

Scientific Name: Motacilla tschutschensis

Malay Name: Pipit-Batu Zaitun Timur

Chinese Name: 黄鹡鸰

Range: Breeding range includes northeastern China, eastern Russia, Alaska. Wintering range includes most of Southeast Asia and includes Australia.

Taxonomy: Polytypic. Subspecies are: plexa, tschutschensis, macronyx, taivana.

Size: 17 cm

Identification: Amount of yellow on underparts variable, in non-breeding plumage generally has whitish underparts with greyish-brown upperparts. Individuals in breeding plumage observed in Singapore have grey cap and nape with all yellow throat and underparts. Compared to Grey Wagtail in non-breeding plumage, has dark legs, more olive or brownish mantle and lacks yellow rump.

Similar looking species: Citrine Wagtail, Grey Wagtail

Habitat: Variety of open habitats with grass cover, has preference for moist or 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: Uncommon migrant

Conservation Status: Least Concern (BirdLife International 2019)

Location: Recorded across many locations in Singapore, including Lim Chu Kang, Lorong Halus, Yishun.

Migrant bar chart (see more bar charts):


BirdLife International. (2019). Motacilla tschutschensis. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2019. https://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2019-3.RLTS.T103822471A154735918.en. Accessed on 1 January 2023