|European Starling in Summer|
•Since its introduction into North America, European Starling populations have grown to over 200 million birds and they can now be found coast to coast and in Alaska.
•When European Starlings molt their feathers in the fall, the new feathers have white tips, giving the appearance of “stars”. Over the winter, sunlight and weather dulls the speckled look as the tips wear off and the bird becomes uniform dark brown or black.
|European Starling in winter|
•European Starlings have a highly adaptable diet and eat a wide variety of foods, such as snails, worms, millipedes, and spiders, in addition to fruits, berries, grains, and seeds.
•To glean insects and invertebrates, you can watch starlings poking their beaks into the ground, opening wide to spread the soil and then picking out exposed larvae and earthworms.
• Baby starlings almost look like a different species. They are a dark gray and then start to grow a black and white spotted vest. Eventually they get their adult feathers before winter.
Image via Wikipedia
|Juvenile European Starling|
•Starlings, as members of the Sturnidae family, are cousins to the Mynah bird and are outstanding mimics. Individuals have been known to mimic many calls and can even mimic human speech.
•Bird banding records show the longest known life-span for a Starling in North America to be over 15 years old.
• A group of starlings has many collective nouns, including a "constellation", "filth", "murmuration", "scourge", and "vulgarity" of starlings.