In 1890, 100 starlings were released in New York's Central Park, by a man who wanted to have all bird species mentioned by William Shakespeare introduced to North America. Since the introduction of this non-native species, their population has grown to what is estimated to be in the hundreds of millions. After pigeons and sparrows, they are the biggest pests that hail from the skies. The following are some more starling facts for Toronto homeowners:
Gates Gets Them Out
Animals We Service
Starlings are everywhere, especially areas with trees and buildings that can be used for nesting and grass for foraging. The birds may or may not migrate depending on weather conditions and can be found in towns, cities, ranches, farms, fields, woodlands, and lawns.
Monogamous, starlings court and mate each spring. Three to eight eggs are hatched in each clutch and birds can nest up to three times a year. Eggs hatch 11 to 13 days after incubation.
Food and Feeding
They eat a variety of substances but prefer insects they can pull out of lawns and grassy fields. When feeding, they tend to flock with birds in the front frequently shifting to the back in a rolling pattern.
Morphology and Lifestyle
- Length: 15 – 30 centimeters depending on species
- Weight: 34 – 225 grams
- Calls: Varied - can emit a “wolf whistle” like sound along with various whistling notes and chatter
- Lifespan: About three years on average
Did You Know?
- Starling fact: Starlings are very aggressive!
- Starling fact: Slippery droppings pose safety risks in populated areas.
- Starling fact: Starlings compete for resources with native, cavity-nesting birds like purple martins, bluebirds and flickers.