starling sitting on a wire

Introduction

Starlings are a species of bird that are found invading urban, suburban, and rural settings. These birds were first introduced into the United States in New York in 1890; by 1950 they had made their way across the entire country, all the way to the pacific coast. Starlings are found living throughout the entire state of Missouri.

Recognition

Starlings have dark colored glossy green feathers and have lighter color white speckles throughout their feathers. Their beak is bright yellow in color, however when the weather cools in the winter their beak changes color to a darker brownish-yellow color. They have a stocky body and short tail. The adults grow to be about 8-½ inches in length.

Biology

Starlings produce two broods of young per year, laying 4-7 eggs each time. Their nests are usually built in the cracks and crevices of homes and other buildings. They are an aggressive species that will not hesitate to take over the nesting sites of other native birds, driving them out of the area.

Starlings incubate their eggs for approximately 12 days and the young starlings leave the nest about 21-23 days after they hatch.

These pest birds carry and transmit a wide variety of diseases in their feces. Histoplasmosis is a serious disease that is caused from a fungus that often grows in a build-up of their feces.

Habits

Starlings are an omnivorous bird species which means that they feed on seeds, suet, crumbs, trash, fruit, and insects and grubs. These birds can become quite a nuisance by tearing through garbage while foraging for food and can damage agricultural fruit crops. Also, their feces can build up on a home and become corrosive and thus damaging the structure and/or can build up on the ground, leading to slip and fall injuries, not to mention the pathogens and fungus that grows in it.

Starlings like to perch and nest on gutters, especially clogged gutters because they provide an easy water source. These birds travel together in large flocks and can be found gathered on lawns feeding on insects in the grass. Starlings also like to feed at bird feeders, their aggressive nature means that they will drive other birds away from the feeders.


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Prevention

Preventing starlings from becoming a nuisance on your property can be a difficult task because they often flock in large numbers and can overtake a property and drive out other bird species very quickly. The best way to prevent problems with starlings is to seek help from a professional bird control expert.

Control

Rottler Pest and Lawn Solutions can help to control and remove starlings from your property through our bird control program. Our bird control experts will inspect your home and property and provide you with the best options available to remove starlings from it and make necessary changes to help deter them in the future.

Our bird control services include: a site evaluation by one of our trained experts, birds dropping and debris cleanup, deodorizing and disinfecting, providing effect trapping and exclusions services (using the top products in the business) to take care of your current problem, followed-up by ongoing maintenance and follow-up services to prevent future issues with starlings and other pest birds.

Sources

Missouri Department of Conservation

University of Missouri

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