Sturnus Vulgaris – European Starling

Distinguishing Features – European starling is black with purplish and greenish reflections. Tail, short, square; bill, yellow, long; legs reddy-brown.

From late summer to winter, the plumage becomes white-spotted as in the accompanying photo. Male and female indistinguishable but female is slightly smaller.

  • Size – 19 – 21 cm
  • (7.5 – 8.5 in)



Varied. Frequents enhabited areas.


In natural cavities in trees or woodpecker holes, in bird boxes, or in building crevices.

Nest of sticks, grass, and weeds fill the crevice; lined with grass, feathers, and other soft materials. Eggs, usually 4 – 6; pale blue or greeny-white.

The incubation period is 11 – 14 days.


The Starling was introduced to North America from Europe in the late-1800s. Since that time it has spread over much of the continent and its range is still growing.

Although its foraging habits are mostly beneficial, consisting of insects, it has an appetite for small fruits, often causing serious damage to orchards.

Its song is a procession of whistles, chirps, and warbles.

There are a lot more common bird species that you should know about.