Starling Sturnus vulgaris   [Linnaeus, 1758]

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Order: Passeriformes Family: Sturnidae
BTO Codes: SG, STARL EURING No: 15820
Number in Britain: 1.8 million Pairs (Summer)
Conservation Status:
UK: RED
European: 3 Concern, most not in Europe; Declining
Global: (Details)
Status in UK: (A)  Resident Breeder, Passage/Winter Visitor
Subspecies: vulgaris (RW), zetlandicus (R) recorded in Britain (of 13 subsp. in the world)
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Length: 22 cm Wingspan: 40 cm Weight: M/F: 78 g    
Scientific name from: L.: sturnus=a starling and L.: vulgaris=common
World Distribution: BREEDS: Europe (except Iberia, Greece), c Asia, WINTERS: s to n Africa, s Asia, INTRODUCED North America, Australasia
Habitat: Farmland, woodland, towns
Diet: Mostly insects (esp crane-fly larvae), fruit and seeds, mostly on ground, often near cattle
Identification Tips:
  Images from IBC or search flickr
  Videos from IBC
  Sound from xeno-canto
Crossley ID photos

Population and Distribution

Population Trend: BirdTrends   
Regional Trends: Scotland   Wales   England   English Regions
Distribution: Atlas Mapstore    BBS Maps
British Population Size:
    Summer: 1.8 million Pairs in 2009
    First Record: Recorded in Anglo-Saxon times [Fossil evidence from Middle Pleistocene, c. 500,000 yr ago]
    Latest Survey: Newson, S.E. et al. (2008) Journal of Applied Ecology 45:1330-1338
    Conservation Status: RED because Recent Breeding Population Decline,
   Previous Assessments: 2002-2007 RED     1996-2001 AMBER  
   Races of Concern: vulgaris RED (Recent Decline), zetlandicus AMBER (Important Population)
Habitat Occupancy (in the Breeding Season):
    Most frequent in: Towns
    Also common in: Villages
Relative Frequency in Each Habitat:
Migration routes: Map of foreign ringing recoveries  and summary map from Time to Fly (in pop-up windows)
European Population Size:
    Summer: 21 to 46 million pairs   (Trend in Numbers)
Population Assesment from Birds in Europe
Distribution in Europe mapped by the EBCC Atlas
Listed on the Appendices/Schedules of: WCA(III), WBD(II*), NERC (41)
Survey Results: Results from BirdTrack
Results from Garden BirdWatch
Results from the Winter Farmland Bird Survey
Results from BTO Report for Defra

Breeding and Survival

Egg Size: 30 x 21 mm Egg Weight: 7.0 g (of which 6 % is shell)
Number of Nest Records: 395
Clutch Size: 4 - 5 eggs 4.60 ± 0.94 (2 - 9) N = 2920
Incubation: 12- 15 days 12.38 ± 1.61 (9.5 - 15.5) N = 2920   by the: Male + Female
Fledging: 19 - 22days 20.50 ± 3.25 (15 - 26) N = 5459 as: Altricial, downy
Source:
British Trust for Ornithology (2005) Nest Record Scheme data
First Clutches Laid: 19 Apr (6 Apr - 30 May)
Number of Broods: 1-2
See trends in Breeding Productivity
Number Ringed: Annual Totals
Adult Survival: 0.687 ± 0.004       
Juvenile Survival: 0.518 (in First-Year)  
Age at First Breeding: 2 years Typical Lifespan: 5 years
Maximum Recorded Age: 17 years 7 months 25 days (set in 2001)
Read a summary of Ringing Recoveries

Biometrics

Ring Size: C
Wing Length Adult: 131.3 ± 3.5 Range 126 - 137 mm, N =32774
Juvenile: 130.2 ± 4.2 122 - 136 mm, N =10312
Male: 132.6 ± 3.1 128 - 137 mm, N =18182
Female: 129.5 ± 3.3 124 - 135 mm, N =13930
Weight Adult: 84.99 ± 9.88 Range 73.30 - 98.00 g , N =24304
Juvenile: 81.83 ± 7.59 70.00 - 95.00 g , N =8104
Male: 86.95 ± 9.97 76.00 - 100.0 g , N =13448
Female: 82.50 ± 9.27 72.00 - 95.00 g , N =10351
Source:
British Trust for Ornithology (2005) Ringing Scheme data

Other Names

Common Starling
Gaelic: Druid Welsh: Drudwen
Danish: Stær Dutch: Spreeuw
Finnish: Kottarainen French: Étourneau sansonnet
German: Star Hungarian: Seregély
Icelandic: Stari Irish: Druid
Italian: Storno Norwegian: Stær
Polish: Szpak Portuguese: Estorinho-malhado
Spanish: Estornino pinto Swedish: Stare
Collective Noun:Murmuration (or Chattering)

For More Information...

Books and Monographs:
   Feare, C. 1984 The starling Oxford University Press, Oxford [598.971 FEA]
   Feare, C.J. 1985 The Starling Shire Publications, Princes Risborough [Jour: S]
   Feare, C.J. 1996 Studies of West Palearctic birds: Starling British Birds 89:549-567
See Also:
Find scientific papers on Google Scholar or Scirus by clicking the icon
Wikipedia entry
HBW account (subscription required)
BirdLife species page
Recent sightings and information from BirdGuides
All About Birds (from the Cornell Lab of Ornithology)