European Stonechat (Saxicola rubicola)
The European Stonechat (S. rubicola) is a fairly common resident and partial migrant to Sussex. They are associated with two main breeding areas: heathland and downland with gorse and scrub. Ashdown Forest in East Sussex holds about 50-70% of the county total of circa 150-200 pairs; this out of a national population of circa 56,000 pairs. They are typically seen perching on the tops of bushes in otherwise rather open places, with favoured locations being regularly visited.
An attractive bird and one that is always a pleasure to see …
Scott-Ham, M., 2014. European Stonechat. The Birds of Sussex. Thetford: British Trust for Ornithology (BTO) Books on behalf of the Sussex Ornithological Society, pp. 518-519.
Scott-Ham, M., 1996. Stonechat. Birds of Sussex. Sussex Ornithological Society, pp. 424-425.