Sichuan bush warbler (Image: Bo Dai)
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Song heralds presence of new bird species

The distinctive song of a secretive and elusive bird in central China has helped researchers to identify it and deem it to be a new species to science.

Scientists first heard the harsh call of the Sichuan bush warbler in 1987, but they only recently gathered enough data to formally describe it.

The new species, Locustella chengi, has been named after Prof Cheng Tso-hsin, a distinguished Chinese ornithologist.

The call of the Sichuan bush warbler consists of harsher notes, compared with its closest relative, the russet bush warbler.

(Audio courtesy of Prof Per Alstrom from the Swedish Species Information Centre, based at the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences)