Black Redstart (Phoenicurus ochruros)

A Female Black Redstart

Thursday I was working late at school and I took a phone call outside. While I was talking, I watched a group Black Redstarts in the school garden. The females were quite bold, coming within a few meters of me (photo above). They were doing what flycatchers do, taking insects while fluttering in the air. Quite acrobatic. They also were sounding the alarm call, as there was a feral cat below the bushy tree they were in.

They get there name from the reddish tail, and from the males (below) that are mostly black and grey which differentiates them from the common redstart. The males were shy, preferring to stay on the other side of the school courtyard.

The Black Redstart is naturally found throughout Europe  and its preferred habitat is open, rocky terrain, often in the mountains. It has adapted to cities however, and is now evolved into more of a village bird. In Serbian, the bird’s name is Crna crvenrepka, which translates as black red start.

Crna crvenrepka

A Male Black Redstart


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