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Daurian Redstart - BirdForum Opus

Adult male
Photo © by Peter de Haas
Junam reservoir, Korea, May 2005
Phoenicurus auroreus


Length 14-15 cm (5½-6 in), weight 11-20 g.
Sexually dimorphic. Both sexes have black bill and feet.
Male: Crown and nape grey, edged with silver; throat, lores, and cheeks black; mantle and wings brownish-black, with a large, white wing patch; remaining plumage reddish-rufous, with darker central tail feathers.
Female: brown, with a large, white wing-patch, buffy eyering; tail reddish-rufous like male, but more dull; vent may also be rufous.

Photo © by Neil Fifer
Hong Kong, China, 27 March 2008

Similar species

Güldenstädt's Redstart is larger, with a larger white wing patch and silver-white crown and nape in the male, female much paler and lacking the white wing patch. Male Hodgson's Redstart paler, with white eyebrow and smaller, narrower wing patch. Male White-throated Redstart with white throat patch, wing patch a long thin streak with white tertial edges. The southern subspecies of Common Redstart Phoenicurus phoenicurus samamisicus differs in white fringes on the secondaries, rather than a solid white patch. Black Redstart without white wing patch in either sex; males also more extensively black on the breast, and females greyer.


Breeds from northeastern Asia to southwestern China, winters in southern Japan, southern China, Taiwan, northern Indochina, and Myanmar.



There are two subspecies[1]:

  • P. a. auroreus:
  • P. a. leucopterus:
Male differs from male P. a. auroreus in slightly more extensive black throat, darker grey crown and more intense orange underparts; female marginally darker[2].


Breeds in summer in subalpine forest, winters in lower deciduous scrub and cultivated land. Usually a common bird in suitable habitat.


Like other redstarts, frequently shivers or shakes its tail.


The diet includes insects, seeds and berries.


Song: a series of clear whistled notes
Call: may be a few soft whistles followed by tac, tac notes, or a sharp peep or hit, wheet.

Starts with Daurian Redstart, other calls include Chinese Bamboo Partridge, Oriental Greenfinch and a bulbul
Recording by china guy, Sichuan, China, September 2011


  1. Clements, J. F., T. S. Schulenberg, M. J. Iliff, D. Roberson, T. A. Fredericks, B. L. Sullivan, and C. L. Wood. 2018. The eBird/Clements checklist of birds of the world: v2018. Downloaded from http://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/download/
  2. Del Hoyo, J, A Elliot, and D Christie, eds. 2005. Handbook of the Birds of the World. Volume 10: Cuckoo-Shrikes to Thrushes. Barcelona: Lynx Edicions. ISBN 978-8487334726
  3. Brazil, M. (2009): The Birds of East Asia: China, Taiwan, Korea, Japan, and Russia. Princeton University Press. ISBN 0-691-13926-1
  4. Collar, N. (2019). Daurian Redstart (Phoenicurus auroreus). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from https://www.hbw.com/node/58501 on 2 April 2019).

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