American Redstart

American Redstart

American Redstart
(Setophaga ruticilla)

Order:  Passeriformes
Family:  Parulidae

Male American Redstart
Photo © Don DesJardin

American Redstart Information

Length:  4.5 - 5.5"

Breeding Habitat:  Open deciduous or mixed woodlands, forest edges, roadside trees, orchards, shrubby edges of streams and ponds, brushy edges of pastures, parks. Prefers moist, second-growth habitats with an understory of saplings.

Diet:  Insects, including caterpillars, beetles, moths, leafhoppers, and flies; spiders; some wild fruits and berries.

  Calls of the American Redstart

Additional Information

American Redstart
Range, habitat, physical description, reproduction, lifespan, behavior, communication, food habits, predation, and conservation status. Includes photos. (From Animal Diversity Web)

Female American Redstart

Female American Redstart

By Reago & McClarren [CC 2.0]

American Redstart
Identification Tips

  • Small, insect-eating bird
  • Thin, pointed bill
  • Feeds very actively (even for a warbler)
  • Often fans tail exposing red or yellow patches
Adult male
  • Orange-red sides of breast, wing and tail patches
  • Belly and undertail coverts white
  • Remainder of plumage black
Female and immature
  • Yellow sides of breast, wing and tail patches
  • White underparts
  • Olive upperparts with grayer head
  • Immature males begin to acquire adult male pattern in second year

(Credit: U. S. Geological Survey)

Breeding Bird Survey Map,

American Redstart Breeding Map

(Image credit: USGS)

Range in New England

The American Redstart breeds throughout New England.

This warbler is not found in this region during the winter, except on very rare occasions. The eBird map below shows some of these sightings.

Winter Map from eBird

Sightings of the American Redstart from Dec-Feb over past 10 years (2009-2019)

Christmas Bird Count Map
Historical CBC Map from USGS