The starling is a common species of bird that is roughly 8 inches long with black or dark brown plumage and a metallic sheen. Its feathers are sometimes speckled with white. Notably, the beak of the common starling is black in winter and yellow in summer. Young starlings have a brown or grey beak.

Starlings have short tails and a triangular-shaped wingspan. They also have a particularly loud birdsong which can prove disruptive in residential and urban areas.

In the UK, starling numbers are at their highest in autumn, due to their migration patterns. They will usually build their nests in tree holes or on buildings and will often take over nesting boxes.

During the winter, they will move into more densely populated areas where food and water is less scarce. There can be as many as 100,000 birds in a single starling flock, and when they roost, the noise and fouling produced is considerable.


  • Are starlings a pest in UK?

    No, starlings are not a public health pest but they can do damage to crops and property

  • How do I get rid of starlings in my roof?

    Contact a professional pest control company for advice and ask them to help with the problem.

  • How long will starlings stay?

    Most starlings are resident in the UK all year round but some come to the UK in late September / October for the winter and leave February/March

  • Do starlings cause damage?

    Yes, crops can be damaged by the birds feeding on them and they can damage roof spaces by introducing contaminated nesting materials.

  • Are starlings protected in the UK?

    Yes, Starlings are protected by the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, which makes it illegal to intentionally kill, injure or take a starling , its nest or the nests contents.

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