Prunella modularis - Hedge accentor:

DCB1115Dunnock.jpg (28115 bytes)

Summary Information
Living Organisms / Animalia / Craniata / Aves / Passeriformes / Passeridae / Prunella / Species

This section is currently predominantly used in Wildpro to link different data types and demonstrate inter-relationships. Although it identifies that taxonomic interrelationships of species (see "header") it does not currently contain detailed information on the bird species itself. As WILDPro is developed, we will gradually convert these pages into full Species pages.

The taxonomy of birds is still under review and the A World Checklist of Birds by Burt L. Monroe, Jr and Charles G. Sibley (B89) has been chosen as the primary reference. The taxonomic structure will be amended when new editions or complete references are identified by the scientific world as the recognized primary references for taxonomy.

Alternative Names
  • Prunella modularis - Dunnock (B164)
Distribution Western Eurasia; winters to north-western Africa, Middle East (B89)
Habitat Breeding - "A wide variety of woods, hedges, gardens" (B163)
Further Information Feeding:
  • food - mainly insects, sometimes seeds
  • feeding behaviour - ground gleans, sometimes foliage gleans


  • location and structure - cup nest in shrub, sometimes in deciduous tree
  • nest building - female
  • breeding structure - "Breeding system is often monogamous, but may also involve a male and two or more females, two females and one male, or two or more males plus two or more females! females gain from two or more males because these males may all feed her young, and this allows for larger clutches. Males try to remain with female to ensure paternity and female tries to loose such males" B163.


  • markings - mainly unpatterned, sometimes with red spots
  • number of eggs - 4-6 (3-7)
  • broods - 2 (3) broods
  • incubation - by male and female; 12-13 days


  • development - Altricial
  • parental caring for young - by male and female
  • fledging - 11-12 days

(B163, B164)

Organisations (UK Contacts):

Electronic Library (further reading):

  • --

General Legislation:

  • This species is listed on Schedule 3 - Part I (Birds which may be sold alive at all times if ringed and bred in captivity: Notes on the revised schedules state "NB: Certain birds on Schedule 4 may also be sold under licence provided they are registered with the DETR") of the LUK2 - Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 of the United Kingdom. (W5.Oct01)

Individual techniques:

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