Scientific Name: Sturnus Vulgaris
Diet: European Starlings are omnivores. They eat a wide variety of invertebrates, fruits, and bugs, and they also eat grains, worms, snails, and human garbage.
Habitat: European Starlings live in many suburban areas including towns, cities, backyards, pastures, open woods, and fields.
Range: The European Starling can be found throughout the US year round, and during the summer it can be found across northern Canada.
Sound: The European Starling’s song is a mixture of warbles, whistles, check!s, and rattles, seemingly jumbled together. A buzzy purrn! is given in flight.
Nesting: European Starlings are cavity nesters. They place their nests in old woodpecker holes, man-made structures, and nest boxes, and the nest is usually 10 to 25 feet above ground. The male Starlings pick out the nest site and use it to attract a female. The nest is made of twigs, trash, and grass, and it’s lined with feathers or soft plants. European Starlings lay 4 to 6 eggs and both the male and female incubate them for about 12 days. When the chicks hatch they are helpless, and their eyes are shut.
Behavior: European Starlings flock all year, but during fall and winter the flocks are larger. While foraging they walk, hop, and run along the ground using their bills to look for bugs and other food.
Description/Field Marks: European Starlings are about 8-9 inches long, and they have wingspans of about 12 to 16 inches. Their backs and breasts are shimmery green, and their heads are a mixture of shimmery green and purple. Their wings are brown. They have pink legs, and their bills are yellow. Juvenile Starlings are brown all over, with black bills and eyes.
How to Attract: To attract European Starlings, put a suet or seed feeder in your backyard. Starlings will also use nest boxes.