The African Jacana is monotypic and hails from the family Jacanidae which consists six genera and eight species. These unusual wading birds are identified by their long legs and extremely long slim toes and claws which enable them to distribute their weight evenly, thereby allowing them to walk across water on thin and flimsy floating vegetation.
Gulls and terns
The title of Black-headed Gull is rather a misnomer for this bird as its head is not black but a dark brown colour and only in adult birds during the breeding season. It is not present during the winter months or in other plumages. Unlike many gulls it is not restricted to coastal regions and is widespread inland in both rural and urban areas.
Aquatic warblers are rare and temporary migrants to parts of southern England each autumn, en-route from their breeding grounds in Poland, Ukraine and Belarus to their winter territories in West Africa. Only around 40 sightings are reported each year, with the species classed as vulnerable and in decline.
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