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(Common) Starling - Stær - Sturnus Vulgaris
Stare - Stær - Kottarainen - Spreeuw - Star - Etourneau sansonnet - Estornino Pinto


Much maligned over large areas of its range the Starling is far from unwelcome in Øygarden. Here is it a migrant that often nests in or around houses and does great work in the fields where they consume, among other things, leather jacket larvae. The vast majority leave during the winter but small numbers usually stay here and there. Many people encourage this species with nestboxes.

The species has been introduced in many countries and causes widespread destruction in some of these. In the UK it has earned a bad name for clearing out bird tables and feeders before other species get a look in. Over much of Europe the Starling is in widespread decline due to habitat loss and changes in agriculture.




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(Common) Starling
Tjeldstø, Øygarden, January 2010



Pictures taken using a digital SLR camera with a 400mm telephoto lens

Starling are a common sight on offshore platforms and vessels and may spend days onboard if there is food available - typically scavenging in skips. They can die in quite big numbers by colliding with structures during the hours of darkness; they are also a favoured prey item for offshore Long-eared Owls.



Migrant Starling resting on a boat
Starling resting on an offshore vessel, German Sector of the North Sea, November 2011

This picture was taken at night using a hand held DSLR with a telephoto lens. Using an ISO setting of 2500 and underexposing I managed to get the shutter speed down to 1/500. Quite a reasonable result given the conditions. For more about nocturnal photography see this link.






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