European starling Facts

European starling Facts
European starling is a songbird that belongs to the family of starlings. It originates from Europe, but it can be found around the world today. European starling inhabits woodlands, cliffs, quarries, coastal areas, fields, agricultural areas, parks and gardens. Number of European starlings in the Europe is declining due habitat loss as a result of accelerated development of agriculture. Global population of European starlings is still large and stable and these birds are not on the list of endangered species.
Interesting European starling Facts:
European starling can reach 7.5 to 9.1 inches in length and 2 to 3.6 ounces of weight.
European starling is covered with black plumage with purple and green sheen. Black feathers with white tips can be seen during the autumn, creating mottled appearance. By the end of the winter, tips of the feathers become worn out and European starlings are once again completely black. Hatchlings are covered with grey-brown plumage. Young birds attain adult coloration quickly, but their head remains grey until they reach adulthood.
Color of the bill depends on the season. European starling has yellow bill during the spring and black bill during the winter.
European starling has pointed bill, short wings and tail and pinkish-red legs.
European starling is an omnivore (it eats plants and meat). Its diet is based on the millipedes, spiders, snails and worms during the winter. Berries, seed, grains and fruit are major source of food during the summer.
European starling uses its beak to find food hidden in the soil.
European starling eliminates pest from the crops, but it also inflicts serious damage on the commercially important types of fruit.
European starling produces various unmusical songs that are composed of whistles, chuckles and rattling sounds. It can mimic songs of other birds and sound of human speech.
European starlings are gregarious birds that live in large flocks especially on the wintering grounds. Group of European starlings is known as "constellation", "filth" or "scourge" of starlings.
Large numbers of European starlings often congregate before the dusk near the roosting areas to sing, preen their plumage and to rest in the group.
European starlings produce two broods per season. They compete with native, cavity-nesting birds for the holes in the tree or for the abandoned nests of woodpeckers.
Both male and female participate in the construction of the nest. They use leaves, wool, feathers, moss and twigs to fill the interior of the cavity.
Female lays 5 to 7 bluish eggs in the second half of April. Both parents take part in the incubation of eggs (that lasts 15 days) and provide food for their chicks.
Young birds can fly at the age of 18 to 21 days, but they are not ready for the independent life at least one or two weeks.
European starling can survive more than 15 years in the wild.

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