Redstarts Phoenicurus spp

Redstarts are a group of Old World flycatchers Muscicapidae. They are insectivorous and have a red tail. They are migratory, arriving in the late spring to breed over the summer in the Touraine Loire Valley, then departing south again in the early autumn.

Males are slate grey, black and red, females are browny grey with red tails. Two species are present in the Touraine Loire Valley -- Common Redstart Phoenicurus phoenicurus (Fr. Rougequeue à front blanc) and Black Redstart P. ochruros (Fr. Rougequeue noir).

Fledgling on our neighbour's garden wall. The bird has probably come from the nest in our barn.


  1. The first Black Redstarts to appear in the UK...
    did so on the bomb sites in London almost immediately the 39-45 war ended.

    1. Also, the male Black Redstart doesn't get his full "jacket and tails" configuration until the Autumn moult of his first adult year...
      something not in the books and only learnt here by observation...
      very confusing to see two "females" mating!!