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Black Redstart
Phoenicurus ochruros

Black redstarts used to be mountain birds, nesting in cliff faces and on boulder-strewn slopes, but have adapted to using tall buildings in towns and cities. The Second World War led to a marked rise in the population of these birds as the bombed-out ruins made ideal nesting grounds for them. They are about the same size as a robin and have a song consisting of whistles followed by a crackling sound. The first is a male (sooty black plumage and white patches on the wings) and the second is a female (brown plumage and no white pacthes). The female was building a nest just outside my office. The last two are of a juvenile.
 

Black Redstart  Black Redstart

Black Redstart

Black Redstart

1: BŁmpliz, 08/04/2007.
2: DCB, Universitšt Bern, 02/05/2007.
3-4: Neuch‚tel, 22/07/2007.