Bearded reedling

Long-tailed reed bed-dweller

Bearded reedlings in the reedsg, photo Eero Haapanen

The bearded reedling (Panurus biarmicus) first started nesting in Finland in the early 1990s. It is an exotic, long-tailed bird, which is more often heard than seen. When you hear a tapping, metallic ‘dting dting’ call coming from the reeds, the next thing you see is usually a flock of bearded reedlings taking flight and moving to another location.

In some harsh winters, Vanhankaupunginlahti’s breeding populations of bearded reedlings have all but died out. As a result, there were no bearded reedlings nesting in the bay in 2013. However, since some bearded reedlings opt to migrate, their populations have always recovered.

Bearded reedlings feed on insects in the summer and on the seeds of common reeds in the winter. The species is only found in reed beds.