White Wagtail

Scientific Name: Motacilla alba
Malay Name: Pipit-Batu Murai Erasia
Chinese Name: 白鹡鸰

Widespread breeding range from Europe to Asia, wintering range includes Africa, the Middle East, and southern Asia.

Polytypic. Subspecies are: yarrellii, alba, subpersonata, personata, baicalensis, ocularis, lugens, leucopsis, alboides.

Local Subspecies: ocularis, lugens, leucopsis, alba

Size: 16.5-18 cm

Very variable in plumage across range and subspecies, individuals in Singapore can exhibit plumage differences in face, coverts, mantle, and chin. Plumage is a mixture of black, white, and grey compared to other migrant wagtails which generally exhibit some yellow in their plumage and are warmer in colour.

Habitat: Variety of habitats including open fields, storm drains, reservoir edges, seawalls.

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: Yishun, Neo Tiew Harvest Lane.

Featured articles:

Past accepted records in our database:

Migrant bar chart (see more bar charts):

BirdLife International. (2019). Motacilla alba. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2019. https://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2019-3.RLTS.T22718348A137417893.en. Accessed on 1 January 2023