Phoenicurus phoenicurus | Common Redstart | Earrdheargán



Conservation status

This species is Red-listed according to Birds of Conservation Concern in Ireland 2020-2026 and is of high conservation value as a result.

This species has moved to the Red list due to breeding population and range declines in Ireland (Gilbert, Stanbury and Lewis, 2021).

Species Biology


Both the male and female Common Redstart can be readily identified by their vibrant red-orange tails.

The male is even more vibrant with a black face and wings, grey upperparts and burnt orange chest and rump.

Females and young are generally much less conspicuous with a less intense orange chest and rump, and a brown face. They may be confused with a Robin for this reason.

A typical Common Redstart stands at 14 cm length with a wingspan of 20-24 cm and weighs 11-19 grams.


The Common Redstart is primarily insectivorous, feeding on various larval species, worms and spiders but will feed on some plant material such as berries.


In Ireland, it breeds in semi-natural broadleaf forests with an abundance of prey items such as insects.


A clutch of 6-7 eggs, weighing approximately 1.9 grams each are laid in early-May to June and are incubated for a period of 13-14 days.

The young will fledge after 16-17 days.

A typical life expectancy for the Common Redstart in the wild is two years with breeding occurring at one year.


World distribution(GBIF)

Irish distribution

It is a rare summer visitor to Ireland with a small breeding population in County Wicklow.

Temporal change

Records submitted to Data Centre in 2023

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Gilbert, G., Stanbury, A. and Lewis, L., 2021. Birds of Conservation Concern in Ireland 4: 2020-2026. [online] Wicklow. Available at: <> [Accessed 2 Jun. 2021].