Bluish gray above: throat black; breast, rump, and under tail-coverts, red: second quill equal to the sixth.
S. Phoenicurus, Temm. Man. d'Orn. torn. I. p. 220. Redstart, Mont. Orn. Diet. Selb. Must. vol. I. p. 191. pl. 46. f. 3. Bew. Brit. Birds, vol. I. p. 239.
Entire length five inches seven lines: length of the bill (from the forehead) five lines and a half, (from the gape) eight lines and a half; of the tarsus eleven lines; of the tail two inches five lines; from the carpus to the end of the wing three inches: breadth, wings extended, nine inches four lines.
(Adult male). Forehead white: base of the bill, lore, cheeks, throat, and a portion of the under surface of the neck, black: head, upper part of the neck, and back, deep bluish gray: breast, rump, flanks, and under tail-coverts, bright rust-red; tail the same, excepting the two middle feathers, which are brown: abdomen whitish: feet black. (Adult female). Upper parts reddish gray: quills and coverts edged with reddish yellow: throat white; in very old individuals dusky, mixed with reddish: breast, flanks, and under tail-coverts pale reddish orange: abdomen whitish: rump rust-red: tail the same, the two middle feathers excepted, which are brown edged with red. ( Young males of the year). Upper parts reddish ash; no white on the forehead; the black on the throat, and the red on the breast, variegated with white. (Egg). Uniform grayish blue: long. diam. eight lines and a half; trans, diam. six lines and a half.
A summer visitant, first appearing about the second week in April. Common in most parts of the kingdom, but said to be rare in some of the western counties. Frequents gardens and woods, and builds in the holes of trees and old walls. Nest composed of moss, and lined with hair and feathers. Eggs five to seven in number. Young broods fledged about the second week in June.