Nesting Starlings

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Yesterday i gave a short note on our starlings, well the picture of the starling wasn’t mine, but this one is. Above is a parent with worms in its mouth waiting for the coast to clear in order to deliver the bounty to its chicks. To build the nest they have scraped away all the mortar, and pulled one of the stones right out of the wall of the house. It seems to have made a lovely safe nest. They’re not the only ones on this wall either. There’s 5 pairs there, having a great time. They do tend to be quite dirty birds, as you can see from the white flow of bird crap from the nest. Guess who gets to clean it up!!! Grrrrr. At least it’s only at the end of the nesting season that I have to do it. They’re a lovely sight though. They seem to spend all their time flying between the nest and where the flock is getting their latest meal. Up and down and up and down all day long. It makes me tired just looking at them.

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3 comments so far

  1. Nora Loobey on

    Hello.
    We have starlings too. In our barbeque no less. They seemed to be very loud a couple of weeks ago and now there isn’t as much song. We thought that maybe they abandoned the nest but when I went to open the barbeque to check, one flew out. Do you think they are waiting for the birds to hatch? Are the babies quiet or loud when they are born? We don’t want to disturb them but want to try and get rid of the nest once the babies are gone. Any advice?
    Thanks!
    Nora

  2. admin on

    A couple of things strike me here. If they’re in a barbecue, then they’re probably close to the ground which is unusual for starlings. Most of those birds prefer to be above seven or eight feet, so that they’re away from predators on the ground.
    But, seeing as they are there and that they’re not making any noise at the moment, my guess is that they’re incubating the eggs which have not hatched yet. Either, they’re just late, or maybe one of the pair is infertile, and the eggs may never hatch.
    If they do hatch, then you’ll easily hear them as soon as one of the parents arrives at the nest, as they’ll all be shouting “me,me,me,me” to the parent who arrived with a worm or two.
    Most of the feeding will be done in the morning through to the early afternoon. They seem to rest in the evenings. If you’re only seeing them in the evenings, then it’s quite possible that their day’s work is done, and they’re relaxing like you. If you have time, then sit inside a window looking at the barbecue for half an hour or so and see what they’re up to.
    If you don’t want them, then just leave them alone to finish nesting. They won’t use the nest again until possibly next year. Next year, make sure that they can’t get into the barbecue again.
    You can read more about their behavior here:
    http://www.birds.cornell.edu/birdhouse/bios/sp_accts/eust

  3. laurie on

    i’ve never been a fan of starlings. when i was a kid one went down our chimney and flapped around inside the fireplace. scared the s*** out of me.


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