As regular CFZ-watchers will know, for some time Corinna has been doing a column for Animals & Men and a regular segment on On The Track... particularly about out-of-place birds and rare vagrants. There seem to be more and more bird stories from all over the world hitting the news these days so, to make room for them all - and to give them all equal and worthy coverage - she has set up this new blog to cover all things feathery and Fortean.

Wednesday, 18 November 2015

Tim Sexton: Starlings are now a conservation concern

By Nottingham Post  |  Posted: November 14, 2015

Returning to the UK after a week's 
holiday  in the Czech Republic, I was treated to a close-up wildlife experience that I had not witnessed for some time – a flock of starlings less than a few feet away from me.

These incredibly colourful birds seem black at a distance, but it is only when you see them at close quarters that you can truly appreciate their colourful winter plumage; glossy black feathers with iridescent green and purple tones and white speckled tips.

Watching so many of these birds in the built-up surroundings of Luton Airport, it was hard to believe that this is a species that is in trouble. Despite coming second in a recent survey of the top 10 common garden birds, the number of starlings breeding in the UK have plummeted by some 80% since 1979. As a result this species has now been added to the red-list of Birds of Conservation  Concern.

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