American Redstart

Setophaga ruticilla




Wood-Warblers (Parulidae)

Code 4


Code 6



Egg Color:

White or pale green with brown and gray marks

Number of Eggs:

2 - 5

Incubation Days:


Egg Incubator:


Nest Location:

In tree.

Nest Material:

Grass, bark shreds, plant fibers and spider silk.





American Redstart: Medium-sized, active warbler with black upperparts and hood, distinctive orange-red patches on wings, sides, and long, fanned tail, and white underparts. 1st spring male has olive-gray upperparts, pale gray underparts with yellow-orange patches on sides, black lores, black spotting on breast, and bright yellow wing bar and tail patches. 1st summer male resembles 1st spring male but shows more black on head and more yellow-orange on sides. Female resembles 1st year males but has gray head with white eye-ring, and white underparts with yellow sides.

Range and Habitat

American Redstart: Breeds from southeastern Alaska east to Newfoundland, and south to northern Oregon, Colorado, Oklahoma, northern Louisiana, and South Carolina. Spends winters in southern Florida and southern California and points south into the tropics. Preferred habitats include second-growth woodlands.

Breeding and Nesting

American Redstart: Two to five white or pale green eggs, marked with brown and gray, are laid in a compact cup of grass, bark shreds, plant fibers, and spider silk, often decorated with lichens, and lined with fine grass and hair. Nest is usually built in a tree or bush 10 to 20 feet above the ground. Female incubates eggs for 12 days.

Foraging and Feeding

American Redstart: Feeds on insects, spiders, caterpillars, berries, fruits, and seeds. Often pursues flying insects by dropping from perch. Has flycatcher-like bristles around bill and competes for food with the Least Flycatcher, which may aggressively attack redstarts.


American Redstart: Gives five or six high-pitched, somewhat coarse notes, ending with an upward or downward inflection: "chewy-chewy-chewy, chew-chew-chew."

Similar Species

American Redstart: Blackburnian Warbler has an orange throat and face, and a white wing patch.


Belly, undertail coverts, chest, flanks, and foreneck.

Back, rump, hindneck, wings, and crown.
The upper front part of a bird.
Parts of a Standing bird X
Head Feathers and Markings X
Parts of a Flying bird X