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- The nightingale of the bog
Bluethroat, © Biopix J Madsen
It might be surprising for many to learn, the existence of a  ”robin red-breast” with a blue throat in Denmark. The bluethroat immigrated to the country about 20 years ago, after having disappeared for 100 years. It is still very rare and is only found as a regular breeder bird  in the bog areas by the Wadden Sea. It lives here in the reed bed along the ditches and trenches. The bluethroat is one of the species in Denmark, which is on the increase. In 2004, 88 males could be heard singing in the bogland. From the marshland at Tøndermarsken, they have now spread north to the river Varde Å and the bay Ho bugt. The bluethroat is more closely related to the nightingale than the robin redbreast. However, it sings most of the day and as it lives hidden in the reed beds, it can most easily be detected if you hear its song. It feeds on insects and spiders that it finds in the open meadowlands that lie by watercourses and ditches. In winter, it heads south to the Mediterranean or to the savannah areas south of the Sahara.
The southern bluethroat is a species that breeds by the Wadden Sea. It is 14 cm high and has a wingspan of 20-22 cm. The male has a distinctive blue throat with a white throat patch, a light eyebrow stripe and rust-red areas under its tail. Females are more unimpressive with brownish colours. Breeds in Central and North Eastern Europe, and coastal areas in North West Europe. Feeds on insects and spiders.