The European starling (Sturnus vulgaris) is a small bird native to Europe but now widely distributed throughout the U.S. In both males and females, the nape, breast and back are covered in iridescent green glossed feathers while the wings are black, sometimes with a sheen that is green or purple in color. The breast may become flecked with white during the winter months. The legs are reddish brown and the irises are dark brown, and the bill is yellow during mating season and black for the remainder of the year (Weber 1979, Craig and Feare 1999, Chow 2000).Some sexual dimorphism exists. Males have elongate breast feathers and a bluish spot at the base of the beak whereas females have short breast plumage and a reddish pink speck at the base of the beak. Juveniles have more rounded wing tips and brownish-black bills (Weber 1979, Craig and Feare 1999).The vocalizations of S. vulgaris are variable and complex, consisting of warbles, clicks, whistles, creaks, chirrups, chips, gurgles and other component sounds (Chow 2000).
- Adeney J.M. 2001. Introduced Species Summary Project: European Starling (Sturnus vulgaris). Available online.
- Chapman F.M. 1966. Handbook Of Birds Of Eastern North America. Dover Publications, Inc. New York. 581 p.
- Chow, J. 2000. Sturnus vulgarisi, Animal Diversity Web. Available online.
- Craig, A. and C. Feare. 1999. The Starling. Princeton University Press, New Jersey. 285 p. Press.
- Kahane, D. 1988. The Invasion of California by the European Starling (Sturnus vulgaris). Unpublished Masters' Thesis, University of California. 133 p. Press.
- Kern, William J. 2004. European Starling. (UF/IFAS) SSWEC-118. 7 p.
- Weber, W. J., 1979. Health hazards from pigeons, starlings and English sparrows: Diseases and parasites associated with pigeons, domestic animals, includes suggestions for bird control. Thomson Publications, New York. 138 p.
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