Blackhead (bird)


In the spring, in the bushes under the canopy of mixed and coniferous forests (which certainly have deciduous undergrowth), in groves, shady gardens and parks, wonderful bird song is heard. Some bird lovers put this forest singer - black-headed slavka in one row with the nightingale.

Males sing from dawn until dusk, sometimes with a break in the middle of the day. The song of the black-eyed wolf consists of two parts. The first part (it is usually heard only from close quarters) is a rather quiet, high, hasty "talk", which consists not only of its own phrases, but also includes borrowing from songs of other species - gray flycatcher, green mocking, nightingale, and marsh warbler.

The second part of the song (most often it is possible to hear precisely her) is performed very loudly, distinctly, separately and slowly, its sounds resemble a flute.

Where the black-headed glory inhabits and where it nests

The Slavic blackhead is widespread in Eurasia from the Atlantic coast to the valley of the Ob and the Kuznetsk Alatau, as well as in North-West Africa.

It winters in Southern Europe, North and Central Africa.

Slavka-blackheads arrive at the end of April - mid-May, but they start building nests only after a month. The males begin construction, at the nesting site they arrange several bases of nests at once, one of which is the female completes independently. The nest is located on a bush of bird cherry, elderberry, hawthorn, raspberry, on young trees of alder, mountain ash, maple, spruce, pine, fruit trees, on high fern leaves.

Hemispherical nest is relatively dense and neat, with translucent walls. In the full clutch it can be 4-6 dirty white with an olive or yellowish-brown patina and with rare brown spots and dashes of eggs. Male and female incubate for 13-14 days.

In the nesting period blackcap it feeds mainly on insects, and in the second half of the summer, it consumes elderberry, mountain ash, honeysuckle, bird cherry, euonymus, buckthorn, raspberry, and carcass.

I offer you a video that cheers up.


In Slavka thin short beak, with it a bird can hunt insects and pick berries. The main part of the summer diet of blackheads are insects, for example, flies, weevils, leaf beetles and caterpillars, which the bird collects on thin branches and leaves in the crowns of trees and shrubs. In addition, the bird often stirs dry, fallen leaves in search of food and examines the grass cover. In the autumn, black-eyed fry also eats fruits and berries, spreading their seeds.

Where it lives

Black Slav is found in most parts of Europe, in Asia Minor and in North Africa. In most nesting places it is a migratory bird; in the autumn it flies to warm regions. Black-headed slapstick returns to nesting sites rather late (in April - early May). But over the summer, the birds manage to bring two offspring. Birds fly to wintering grounds in September-October. They spend the winter in the Mediterranean countries. The British Slav population lives on its territory all year. In winter, birds are kept in urban gardens and parks. Black Slava is an ordinary forest dweller, but lately it can also be found in city parks and gardens. Slaves make their nests at a height of 1-2 meters above the ground on deciduous or coniferous trees, often a nest can be seen on the branches of low bushes. Black-headed Slavka has an elegant body structure. Females are slightly smaller than males. Young blackheads are very similar in color to the female.


Birds from their wintering places return to their nesting sites in April - early May. Immediately after arrival, the males occupy the territory and begin to sing. By singing, they warn rivals that the plot is occupied and call on the female. The male's singing consists of a quiet talk, occasionally interrupted by a loud whistle. Birds in a pair proceed to the construction of a nest 10-18 days after arrival. Sables nest nestle at a height of about 1-2 meters above the ground, on small fir-trees, in the bushes of deciduous undergrowth. Birds build it from horsehair and dry stalks. The female incubates the eggs for 10-12 days. The first days after hatching chicks it does not leave the nest. After 2-3 days, the female flies out of the nest and starts feeding the cubs together with the male. Parents feed their chicks out of the nest for 10 days, and then proceed to the second clutch.


At the nesting ground, black-headed slap appears rather late - in April or early May. Males immediately occupy nesting sites and sing their "wedding" song. They sing while sitting on a branch of a tree or bush. The song of a black-headed mane consists of a quiet "talk", which sometimes alternates with a rather loud whistle. The singing of black-eyed warblers is distinguished by an impressive variety of strength and sonority. He vaguely resembles the murmur of a spring brook. These birds are real forest dwellers (prefer coniferous forests), but often they settle in groves, parks and gardens. Here, black-headed Slavs live all summer until autumn and chicks twice hatch.


  • Males are distinguished by the fact that they can imitate the voices of other birds, for example, in their song there are motifs of songs of singing and blackbirds, nightingales and robins. One of the relatives of this bird is a mockingbird.
  • Before Slavok very often kept in houses. The soft, iridescent chirp of these birds had a calming effect on their hosts.
  • Slavki fly to wintering grounds at night. It is believed that birds in flight are guided by the position of the North Star. It was also noted that adult individuals fly first to the nesting sites.
  • Outwardly, many types of slaves are very similar, but they differ in voice. In some of the Slavs, the song sounds like flute music, while in others it has a sketchy character.


Male: the forehead and crown are black, the back of the head, neck and uppertail are gray in the bird, and the rest of the plumage is olive-brown.

Carrying: the female lays 4-5 eggs. Nest bowl-shaped, tracery, translucent. Eggs are off-white, with indistinct brown spots.

Beak: short and sharp, dark horny. Suitable for picking berries on trees and catching insects.

Female: on her head is a reddish-brown cap, more brown coloring of the lower body.

- whole year
- Wintering
- Nesting

Where it lives

Black-eyed Glory nests throughout Europe (it is a forest dweller) and on the adjacent islands. In addition, Slavs are found in Asia Minor and in North Africa. These are migratory birds that winter in Greece, Spain and North Africa.


In Central Europe, black-eyed fowl is quite common today.

The voices of birds - Slavka-blackhead (Sylvia atricapilla). Video (00:00:59)

Slavka-Chernogolovka lives in forests with undergrowth, on the edges, clearings, in thickets along the banks of rivers, and penetrates into the mountains, as well as in gardens and city parks. The territory of its habitat extends across all of Europe, except for the Far North, and enters Western Siberia. It nests in the north-west of Africa.
This species is characterized by the presence of a black “cap” on the head of the males and red in the females. The general color of the birds is brownish-gray, and the belly is somewhat lighter.
one of the best singers among passerines. In the sound, strength and purity of the song, the Chernogolovka boldly competes with such unsurpassed singers as the nightingale, black and songbirds.

Slavka blackhead. Birds of Brateevograd. Video (00:01:01)

In Brateevo and Marino the bird is rarely seen, there is little forest. Most often they are seen during seasonal spans. But some individuals, lagging behind, from the pack, remained for the winter. At least in the beginning of winter they were seen. Whether they lived to spring is unknown.
In Marino, in spring, summer and autumn, black-headed slavka was seen in the thickets in the area of ​​Plint's ravine.
There are a lot of them along the bank of the Borisov pond in the area of ​​the river Yazvenka. There are also a lot of nettles.

Blackhead slavka

Slavka-Chernogolovka - a bird common to the European part of our country. However, it is unfamiliar to most of our inhabitants. Everyone heard her loud and perky song - both rural and city dwellers, the voice of the warbler intertwined with any bird choir, this bird is numerous, even in city parks and gardens. But, despite the large number, only a very observant person can see it.

Here, it seems, the bird's voice sounds very close, here in this bush ... But, no matter how you look, the bird always remains invisible - the glory is always on the alert, she always sees the pursuer and deftly hides, as if gliding along the branches and always remaining invisible. Having made sure that the pursuer is not lagging behind, the monk-headed stops singing and begins his disturbing “chok-chok” or “chr-chr-chr” - this means that she is dissatisfied with your behavior.

The plumage of this outstanding singer is completely unattractive - it is a solid gray. And only male Slavka wears a shiny black hat, because of which Slav got its name. The females of black-headed birds and the newly flown chicks have a red cap. By the fall, young birds put on a hat according to the floor: the males - black, and the females - red.

Slavka-Chernogolovka, along with the nightingale and the song thrush, is one of the best feathered singers among insectivorous birds, so it is always desired by our singing fans.

Song blackheads

By the song of each species of bird you can choose the epithet that most corresponds to the character of singing. So, a song thrush song is solemn, stately, a nightingale is passionate, charms are transparent and piercing, a chaffinch is perky, etc. If you look for an epithet that would characterize the song of the blackhead, then the definition of "joyful" would be most appropriate.

The song of the blackheads never sounds sad or melancholic: it seems that it performs chastooshkas, which themselves cannot be sung either solemnly or enthusiastically. Chernogolovka as if she receives pleasure and joy from her song.

The song of the blackheads as if consists of two parts. The first is a gurgling, hurried, long, connected, without pauses, and consists of loud and clean whistles. The second part is beautiful for its flute sounds: these clean, deep flute knees are the apotheosis of the song and a kind of chorus, here the “flute” sounds joyfully and provocatively as much as you can expect from it.

Of course, the songs of the blackheads are as individual in their performance as the songs of other species of insectivorous birds. In some songs there are so-called "marriage" or "blots" - unpleasant, ear-cutting sounds.

There are warblers, whose song contains in abundance separate clean trills and knees of birds of another species. But most often, these tribes are skillfully paraphrasing, transforming in their own way, and only those who are familiar with bird voices can identify and determine their true origin.

"Musical" tram

I have repeatedly held slams and have always been amazed by their passion for singing. Slavka, accustomed to the cage, can sing at any time of the day, can sing even at night or in quite unusual conditions.

I remember such a case. To participate in the exhibition I had to urgently carry a cage with a bird in a crowded tram. The cage, as always in transit, was wrapped in a light fabric. Trams drove often, but were crowded to capacity, as always at the end of the day, barely squeezed.

In the tram, as they say, the apple had nowhere to fall. In order not to crush the cage, it had to be put on his head. With one hand he held the handrail, with the other he held the bird on his head. It was hot, stuffy, people - tired, irritated, sharply reacting to someone's elbow or leg.

Go. And then, as soon as the tram rumbled along the rails, my glory ... sang. Her rollicking voice cut off all the noise. People turned heads, and suddenly found a cage with a bird. "This is a canary!" - said some expert admiringly. Gloomy, tired people smiled, and the mood in the tram became different, it immediately became even freer. So, under the singing of Slavs, and drove. Those who were squeezing again immediately picked up the general mood: “Yes, there is music too!” And the mood of the people rose.

"Choral singing

Several years ago, in the Moscow club of amateur singing and decorative birds, contests for the best song among monkeys were held at the annual exhibition.

By the way, the competition for such, lasting several days, or even weeks, exhibitions is held in the first days of the event - it was noticed that after several days of being at the exhibition, many birds change their song: they begin to include "excerpts" from the songs of other birds.

Moreover, even those birds that were silent before this start singing at the exhibition. This so-called phenomenon of mutual stimulation: a chorus of bird voices encourages birds to sing. They seem to fall in the spring, in the breeding season. And what is the task of the male in this period? Mark your nesting area with the help of a song. And the more intensely the surrounding birds sing, the louder the hubbub, the stronger our bird begins to sing. Moreover, it begins to include in its repertoire the tribes of neighboring birds: this is a sign to them that the territory is occupied and there is nothing for strangers to do here. Usually at the end of the exhibition such a hubbub is heard that sometimes it is impossible to hear the words of a guide.

Trapping and the first days at the bird-catcher

Slavka-Chernogolovka refers to quite capricious birds that require a special relationship literally from the first day of cageing.

Blackheads are caught most often immediately upon arrival, with the use of clockwork birds. In their absence, you can rely on a successful catch, only by using large weighted nets, where two assistants are driving the Slavs.

After the bird is caught, the wings are bound, and it is permanently placed in a crate (the bird cage is called a small cage, pulled from all sides by light matter).

The first week is the most responsible. In kuteike, the bird should learn to take new food for it and get used to the small space of the cage. Inside the cupcake water is placed in a jar, and the food at first pours directly onto the floor.

Food for slavka

Insectivorous bird has a very high level of metabolism. Three to four hours without food can be disastrous for her. Therefore, at first, along with the nightingale mixture, Slavka must be fed with live food: mealworms, cockroaches, ant eggs.

On the second or third day, if Slavka successfully took live food, its share decreases, and the share of surrogate food increases: it may be a mixture of grated carrots, boiled cottage cheese and meat, boiled chicken eggs mixed with sliced ​​meal worms. And only when there is confidence that the bird normally consumes food, it can be transferred to a new room.

Cell arrangement

The cage for the maintenance of slates should not be spacious: the optimal length is 50 cm, width is 30 cm, height is 35 cm. In larger cages, birds remain wild for a long time, in small ones, they quickly chase the plumage and lose their appearance. It is advisable to tighten the top of such a cell with a tightly stretched fabric: this will save glut from injury when frightened, when it sharply soars upwards.

Older bird-catchers usually contained all insectivorous songbirds (nightingales, thrushes, redstarts, Slavs, etc.) in cages entirely made of wood. Bamboo sticks were used as vertical bars. Such cells, covered with waterproof varnish, are not only aesthetic and light, but also less traumatic for birds. In the first month of keeping in the cage the bird must be covered with light matter.

Seasonal features

Slavs caught in spring usually start singing after a week and sing for up to two months. Then comes a long break.

In mid-June, Slavs begin to molt. The molting period is the hardest period in the life of a bird. Many lovers do not dare to keep such birds during the molting period, and they release the warblers into the wild. Only with good care and good nutrition, a glory can safely acquire a new outfit.

Chernogolovka refers to migratory birds. Our blackheads winter in Southern Europe, North Africa and in the African savannah strip.

It should be noted that in the winter our birds are not quite welcome guests. People try to give their guests the most delicious and healthy things, and in nature everything is different: our birds have a pretty hard time - they are satisfied at wintering grounds with those kinds of food that are not eaten by the locals, everything that the natives do not eat, the most inedible berries and seeds are used.

Starting in July, birds in nature are preparing to fly away: they switch to eating berries and start storing up fat intensively. The flight takes place in a kind of waves. Having flown several tens of kilometers and having used the accumulated fat resources, the glory briefly stops at suitable places. Here she feeds heavily for several days, accumulating enough fat for another forced march. So: I digged fat — flew, spent “fuel” - stopped, smoked again, and flew again. As the planes land for refueling, so our men make stops. This feature must be taken into account in the maintenance of slaves and the appointment of an autumn and winter diet.

Do not overfeed!

При отсутствии возможности полета, при неумеренном и обильном кормлении в осеннее и зимнее время птица может настолько обрасти жиром, что полностью потеряет способность к полету. Приходилось наблюдать, как от перекорма славка не могла взлететь даже на жердочку. Such obesity can end sadly.

This feature in the feeding of Black-headed Slavs must be taken into account in the cellular content. In summer, animal food is mainly present in animal food; by autumn, the proportion of berries and fruits gradually increases. In winter, forage berries and seeds should be present in the feed. Despite the good appetite of the bird, food at this time is given in limited quantities - a maximum of two tablespoons of the nightingale mixture per day.

Light mode

Wimples are very sensitive to light. Incorrectly chosen light regime in the winter and abundant nutrition lead to hormonal disorders.

When establishing the light regime, it is necessary to proceed from the fact that when migrating, Slavs fly southward - they follow, as it were, a long light day. In the spring they return to their nesting sites, following the same long day of light. It can be said that the black-headed slave spends his whole life with a small range of variations in the length of the daylight. This interval ranges from 10–11 hours in winter and up to 16 hours in summer.

It should be recalled that the light mode is a regulator of molting. Therefore, it is very important to create appropriate conditions for your birds.

For those lovers who keep fry in their homes without taking into account these factors, birds most often have disturbances in molting, bald spots appear in the plumage, birds have excessive fat reserves, and other hormonal disorders are manifested. Most often, when the molting period begins, such birds die. When creating favorable conditions, Slavs live up to ten or more years (in the wild, the average life expectancy of Slavs is 2–3 years), they fade safely, many people willingly sing and delight the owners with their lively disposition.

Evgeny Malakhanov, Bryansk Region

Varieties: Differences and Features

Consider the main types of Slavok.

Garden Slavka - a small soloist of the forest theater. Birds are found in Europe and in the West of Siberia. Ash-brown feathers with emerald shade cover a small body size 13-15 cm.

The gray representative actually has a gray-brown, with a reddish tint plumage on the back, a steel head and sides, pinkish tummy.

Slavka-whirlwind or mills - a very tiny brown bird. Does not grow more than 14 cm, and the weight does not exceed 12-15 grams.

Atlaskaya settles only in the subtropics. He lives on higher ground, more than 1000 meters, not far from the sea. Makes winter flights to Morocco.

Yemen Sinny Slavka is an endangered species living in Yemen (hence the name) and Saudi Arabia.

From pinto to provencal

Pinto is a dweller of Asia. It settles at an altitude of 250-2000 m, near the sea. You can distinguish a bird by the characteristic sound “chuck”, made during singing.

Desert Slavka different red-yellow plumage. Upper feathers have a yellow-gray color, white belly pours in orange. Thin beak straw color.

White-eyed representative of the species acquired the name, thanks to the pronounced white stripes going down from the beak. The bird itself is gray, and the tummy is pink. Found in Turkey and the Caucasus.

Provencal beauty-flyer - an unusual bird with gray feathers in the upper torso. Lower plumage casts red.

From mountain to hawk

Mountain Slavka lives up to its name. It settles only in places over 2000 m. Birds are found in mountainous areas, regions of Kazakhstan, Iran or Turkmenistan.

Motley spectacled bird, the smallest member of the family: up to 10 g.

Sardinian Slavka differs red eye color and gray plumage.

Slavka Ryuppelya - a beautiful little bird of gray shade. The feathers of the wings and tail are black with white spots.

Hawkworm is a large representative: it grows up to 18 cm in length, gaining weight up to 30 g. It has a distinctive green color.

Common variety

Let us consider the main characteristics of representatives of the Slavkov family using the example of the Blackheads. This is a small bird: the weight of an adult reaches 22 grams, the length of the body - 150 mm. Externally similar to the usual sparrow. In color there are predominantly gray, brown and black tones. A distinctive feature is the cap crowning the head: black in males and red in females.

Birds are omnivores. In the summer season they catch mosquitoes, dragonflies and other insects. With the cold go to plant food: seeds, berries.

In nature, black-headed glory is common in Europe, Asia, distant Siberia and Africa. Refers to migratory birds. Prefers to travel in the dark.

Nest period

The habitats of birds are forests and city parks. Bird watching is a fascinating process. Returning from the hibernation, the monarch begins to build nests. The male is engaged in construction, erecting several options to choose female.

Males build nests at a height of 2-3 meters. Breeding patterns allow birds to breed several offspring per season. Slava lays up to 5 eggs at a time.

Hatching involved both partners. Chicks are born two weeks later. They feed young and male and female for 21 days.

Home maintenance: feeding and care details

Slava gets on well with the person, so keeping the bird at home will not be a big hassle.

With individuals, bought in stores, no problems. Catching a wild horse, give a few days to adapt. If the bird is anxious, cover the cage with a white cloth or gauze.

It is easy to be engaged in breeding of women. Even in the absence of freedom, the birds find couples and lay eggs. The main thing is to plant plants in the house so that the males have building material.

Feeding blackcap at home depends on the period. When feeding chicks, protein foods of animal origin are needed: insects, ants eggs, meal worms. They can be found on their own or purchased at the pet store. The rest of the bird menu can be varied:

  • mixtures of grains,
  • fruits,
  • greens
  • vegetables,
  • berries: blueberries, currants, elderberry.

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