This section is from the book "The Balance Of Nature And Modern Conditions Of Cultivation", by George Abbey. Also available from Amazon: The Balance Of Nature And Modern Conditions Of Cultivation.
The Redstart (Ruticilla phoenicura) derives its name from the red colour of the tail, and from the jerking motion which it exhibits when changing position. It is of the Robin family. The male has the upper surface of a bluish-grey colour and the tail red, the female uniform greyish-brown. The Redstarts arrive in Britain early in May and frequent localities near streams, visiting orchards and taking prey on semi-wing. The Redstart builds in the ivy of ruined buildings and trees, a hole in a wall or tree, the eggs, numbering five or six, being of a greenish-blue colour. It feeds upon insects, the young being fed with "soft" and small caterpillars. It departs from British shores late in August or early in September.