‘Ubiquitous’ best describes these in southern Israel in late March. Flippin everywhere! Real pleasure to watch and study. One of those peculiar aspects of the world of birds. They look pretty much just like the Western Bonelli’s Warbler. Indeed attempts to find subtle differences in plumage or structure between the 2 species keeps breaking down. However the call is mahoossively different, and I heard it every day in all kinds of habitat. Eastern Bonelli’s also have lovely flitting and hovering, butterfly-like feeding habits as they feed out on the edge of bushes and trees.
One of the great aspects of birding in Israel is the accessibility of big numbers of species like this. More on these to come.
Eastern Bonelli’s Warbler, S. Israel, March 2012, Martin Garner