TIME 4: Starling

Birds building a nest

This time, the TIME 4 is about birds, Starlings to be precise. One of my contacts, and a great person altogether, is Aditi, and her house had these most clever birds as house guests - yes, literally - and this prompted me to dig into my files and take up this off another entry done previously a good while ago!

The One, in the bird ‘interior design- and decorating world’ that is a top-notch skilled designer, and has the most fanciful taste, is the Starling. You see, I read me newspapers and get a lot of thoughts for blogs there, and a while back I saw this article with some photographs of this bird’s work and it must be seen to be believed. The Starlings even put into the nests some herbs such as mint and lavender with their ethereal oils that add to the wellbeing of the off-spring which has been proven by some French scientists. Apparently, they want to smell good and be fragrant as well, you see!

I will be looking at them birds with an altogether different eye now that I know that there could be some useful and beautiful interior design ideas to be had in their nests. Here is a snippet off an excellent site:

“All of the European Starlings found today in North America-and they number in the 200 million range-are descendants of approximately 100 birds introduced in New York City’s Central Park in the early 1890s. Today, European Starlings are seen from Alaska to Florida to northern Mexico.

European Starlings – (Sturnus vulgaris) – are stocky birds with short, square-tipped tails and pointed wings. During breeding season, they can be distinguished quickly from blackbirds by their long, pointed, yellow bill; blackbirds have dark bills. Starlings exploit a variety of food sources, taking invertebrates, fruits and berries, grain, and temporarily abundant food such as animal feed or garbage.

Both males and females (especially in the fall) can sing and make a variety of calls, whistles, and more complex songs. The males typically sing two types of songs, one consisting primarily of loud whistles and the other a so-called “warbling song” that often incorporates mimicry of other species. An individual bird can mimic up to 20 species, including Eastern Wood Pewee, Killdeer, and Meadowlark songs. It has been observed that longer songs are more successful in attracting a mate.” (Source:http:// http://www.birds.Cornell.edu)

The Starlings seem to be the comedians of the bird world for this it is what this site states:

“Starlings are great at mimicry,, with examples including machines, such as telephones and car alarms, and other birds such as curlews and Pied Wagtails. Consequently, it’s difficult to know what their song is other than a medley of squeaks, clicks and whistles.” Source: British Garden Birds online.

The picture is taken off the net showing them birds at decorating. The young ones must be hiding somewhere in their luxuriously and tastefully designed and oh-so-delightfully fragrant nests. Who would have thought that the Starling was so fashionable and so into detail?

In my school we had this over-enthused biology teacher who insisted on teaching us about birds of all kinds and their songs with a test at the end of it! I have hardly ever sweated so much in my life for a test than I did for that one, let me tell you! Anyway, here is a link to a quizz like he did to us. Good luck! I do not have a memory of how I did on the said thingie – just remember the perspiration prior to the event.

Tis for now. Rii xx

Here is another entry I did on me school years with a mention of this same biology teacher, and all of 80-plants (wild) which we had to collect and present in a Herbarium, in an entry called: Me Memories of Teen Age Years.