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Pest Birds: Starlings
Starlings are native to Europe and Asia but have been introduced throughout the United States.
The Starling's coat is covered with white speckles but changes seasonally and tends to fade somewhat in the summer.
Starlings form flocks during certain seasons and will gather in large numbers. Sometimes several thousand birds will converge on a single location creating an unsightly mess and very noisy problem.
The Starling population has grown to over 200 million birds in North America alone.
Starlings nest in natural or manmade cavities. Hollow trees, walls and soffits with openings of about 1 ½ inches are favorite nesting sites. They are an aggressive species and will often evict native species from their nests.
Starlings produce 1-2 broods per year with about 3‐6 eggs per brood. Eggs hatch in about 12 days and the fledglings will leave the nest in about 25 days.
Starlings may fly great distances from roosts and nests in order to feed.
Starlings have adapted well to urban life and are sometimes the first birds in your yard to feed on bread intended for song birds. Their normal diet is berries, seeds, insects, and other arthropods.
Damage to awnings and signs is common from the droppings of starlings.
Starling nests will often clog gutters and drains causing water damage.
A buildup of feces from large flocks can cause damage to buildings and machinery when uric acid corrodes masonry and metal surfaces. Like other bird species disease pathogens occur in their feces.
The starling is a non‐native invasive species that is not protected by the Federal Migratory Bird Treaty Act.