Red-Backed Shrike

Lanius collurio

Red-Backed Shrike

Red-Backed Shrike

Quick Facts


Scientific name:

Lanius collurio



Conservation status:






24cm to 27cm


25g to 35g

About the Red-Backed Shrike

The red-backed shrike is slightly bigger and slimmer than a house sparrow. Males are distinctive with greyish-blue heads, black face masks, chestnut backs and thick black bills - which are slightly hooked.

These shrikes like to be perched up high - where they have a good view of prey - usually on fence posts, telephone wires and the top of bushes. When they catch things, they take it back to their larder. Once back, they impale items caught on thorns or wedge in a fork.

Red-Backed Shrikes are a Red List species, due to their virtual extinction as a breeding species here in the UK.

What does a Red-Backed Shrike eat?

Their diets consist of small birds, mammals and insects.

Enjoyed this content? Share it now

Other birds in the Shrikes family

Get the good stuff

Get the latest Birdfacts delivered straight to your inbox

© 2023 - Birdfact. All rights reserved. No part of this site may be reproduced without our written permission.