Bird of the Month - October

Bird of the Month - October

Published: 1st October 2019

Bird of the Month – October – Starling

October is a month of great change in the UK. The weather starts to shift and the temperature slowly drops from the summer heights. You’ll notice the trees begin to shift into autumn as the leaves change colour and fall to the ground and wildlife will begin to react accordingly. Birds will start to migrate or find themselves new sources of food to keep them going throughout the winter months. 

If you’re looking for a reason to get yourself and/or your family outside this October, then why not take a trip to see a murmuration* of starlings, who are the October bird of the month. As shown in the image below, this is a visual spectacle that is prominent in autumn months. 

*murmuration – a flock of several thousand starlings swooping through the sky together. 

Starlings can be found in a wide variety of locations such as woodlands, clifftops and even industrial sites. We recommend looking at your local wildlife parks and centres to check for best suitability for viewing them. 

Key information:

Starlings are a little smaller than blackbirds. They can be identified by their short tails, pointed head and triangular wings. They look black at a distance but when seen closer showcase a glossy sheen of purples and greens.

Their flight is fast and direct, but they also walk and run confidently on the ground. Though small, they can be noisy creatures, especially in their large group sizes. Starlings spend the majority of the year in large flocks to protect against predators, but can be known to become aggressive towards one another if food supplies become tight.

Despite keeping its status as one of the UK’s commonest garden birds, its decline elsewhere makes it a Red List species. Although, we can all make a difference to their survival by providing a safe space for them to roost and feed during the harsh winter months. 

What they eat:

The key ingredients in a Starlings diet are invertebrates and fruit. 

Measurements:

The average starling can grow to an approximate length of 21cm, with an average wingspan of 37-42cm.

Suggested products to help keep them fed over the winter months:

Below is a list of items that you can find in Scotsdales stores. These are merely suggestions, we have many other great products available that are suited for starlings dietary requirements. 

Fat balls
Scotsdales offers various options and product sizes ranging from 4 packs all the way up to 50 pack tubs from leading brands such as Gardman. Fat balls can be used for starlings and a plethora of other common garden birds such as robins and blue tits. 

Flutter butter
Various flavours available instore (whilst stocks last). Flutter butter is a great option for birds to absorb protein into their diets. The feeds are prepared and ready to be hung in the garden for birds to find. 

Whole suet filled co-co feeder
Various size ranges available in store (whilst stocks last). Co-co feeders are excellent choices for anyone with limited space in their gardens. Each feeder can be hung without the need for additional bird feeder apparatus. Simply find a hook or a tree branch and let the birds come to you. 

 

Bird Safety:

Please remember, that one of the commonest problems with local wildlife health issues in the UK is due to neglected and dirty feeders. We would like to ask that anyone wishing to assist in the feeding of wild birds makes sure to check and clean feeders regularly to help keep them safe and healthy. 

Looking for further advice?

Then why not pop into your local Scotsdales store today and speak with a  member of our knowledgeable team. We will be happy to assist in anyway we can with advice and guidance regarding the best options for birds in your garden.