We have just returned from Royan in Western France, a great area for birds, including one of my favourite birds the Bluethroat. This is the white spotted race the (Cyancula Svecia) a bird we don't often see in the UK.
These birds return from Africa in late February through early March and can be found in damp scrubby areas. We have found birds at Le Teich bird reserve near Bordeaux, Ile de Re, and Brouarge marsh. This year we managed views of three birds, all in song , which is loud, varied and full of mimicry.
The birds found in Shetland are the red spotted race ( Luscinia Svecia) which migrate later March - May from Africa and the Middle East. They breed in Scandinavia and often get blown off course. Shetland has only had a few Bluethroat this spring.