White-headed Wagtail
White-headed Wagtail
Scientific Name 
Motacilla flava leucocephala
Arabic Name 
راعية الخيل بيضاء الرأس
Kuwaiti name 
16.0 cm
Least Concern


Rare passage migrant. This race may be seen among the large numbers of other “Yellow Wagtails” but usually in small numbers. The only race of wagtail where much of the head is white.
In the world 
Yellow Wagtail has been split into 2 species: Western Yellow Wagtail, Motacilla flava and Eastern Yellow Wagtail, Motacilla tschutschensis. It has an extremely large range and in Europe, trends since 1980 show that populations have undergone a moderate decline. Western Yellow Wagtail breeds in much of temperate Europe and Asia. It is resident in the milder parts of its range, such as western Europe, but northern and eastern populations migrate to Africa and south Asia. This species' systematics and phylogeny is extremely confusing. Literally dozens of subspecies have been described at one time or another, and some 15-20 are currently considered valid depending on which author reviews them.
Local threats 
Indiscriminate shooting, habitat loss and degradation.