Old World Warblers (Sylviidae)

Marmora's Warbler (Sylvia sarda) - HBW 11, p. 700

French: Fauvette sarde German: Sardengrasmücke Spanish: Curruca Sarda

Taxonomy: Sylvia sarda Temminck, 1820, Sardinia, Italy.
Forms a superspecies with S. balearica; until recently considered conspecific, but differs markedly in voice (both calls and song, and neither species responds to other’s song), structure, size, migratory behaviour and mitochondrial DNA. Genetic studies suggest that both are more closely related to S. deserticola than to S. undata; all four species form a clade, and are part of a larger group that also includes S. conspicillata, S. cantillans, S. melanocephala, S. mystacea, S. rueppelli, and S. melanothorax. Monotypic.

Distribution: Breeds Corsica and Sardinia and some off-lying islets, also on a few islands off W Italian coast (Capraia, Elba, Pianosa); non-breeding also N Africa (NE Algeria E to NW Libya).