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A black redstart visits

Dark grey bird sitting on a metal lamp post. Grass and rock in the background.
A black redstart visits. Credit: Mehdi Khadraoui/EMBL

Every year, the gardeners at EMBL Heidelberg leave the lawn between the Advanced Training Center (ATC) and the parking lot to grow. As they mow it only once at the end of the summer, a whole host of insects and birds can feed and breed here. Mehdi Khadraoui, a former member of the EMBL Communications team, took this close-up of a black redstart.

Black redstarts are annual visitors in Germany and usually spend the winter in Southern Europe and North Africa. Males can easily be recognised by their dark grey upper parts, black breast, and orange-red tail. The bird in this picture is likely to be either a female – which are grey overall except for the orange-red lower rump and tail – or a male juvenile, which are similar in appearance to females but darker in colour.

Credit: Mehdi Khadraoui/EMBL

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Tags: ecosystem, heidelberg, spotlight

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