American Redstart

americanredstart

American Redstart (Passeriformes: Parulidae: Setophaga ruticilla) photographed 05/03/2014 at Zaleski State Forest near Athens, Ohio.

All American Redstarts (Passeriformes: Parulidae: Setophaga ruticilla) feature contrasting light and dark plumage, but breeding males are the most strikingly-colored. They sport bright orange patches down the sides of their black wings and tails, with white feathers on their bellies. Redstarts use their coloration in combination with quick, exaggerated movements for a variety of purposes. Their flashes of color can be used to flush out insect prey, and males in particular use them to attract mates and defend territory by sending warnings to competitors.

americanredstart2

American Redstart (Passeriformes: Parulidae: Setophaga ruticilla) photographed 05/03/2014 at Zaleski State Forest near Athens, Ohio.

In the summer these birds can be found in much of the eastern and northern US as well as southern Canada, but they migrate well to the south in winter. Their migratory routes take them through the western and southern US and Mexico, and they overwinter in Central America, the Caribbean, and northern South America. They’re most at home in deciduous woodlands and will nest in a variety of hardwood trees. They aren’t too picky about their food either, and will eat practically any small insect they can catch.

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About Jeremy Sell

Science and nature nerd.
This entry was posted in Vertebrate Zoology and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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