[Tweeters] Starling Mimicry

Rachel Lawson rwlawson at q.com
Wed Jan 6 09:37:27 PST 2016

It’s well known that Mozart had a pet starling that he taught to sing his music.


Rachel Lawson

rwlawson at q.com


From: tweeters-bounces at mailman1.u.washington.edu [mailto:tweeters-bounces at mailman1.u.washington.edu] On Behalf Of Devorah the Ornithologist
Sent: Wednesday, January 6, 2016 2:23 AM
To: Kelly Cassidy
Cc: tweeters at u.washington.edu; Tucker, Trileigh
Subject: Re: [Tweeters] Starling Mimicry

starlings are quite talented mimics of the human voice, too. one long-term experiment along these lines (and also a glimpse into the psychology of these birds) is the delightful and fascinating book, "Arnie, the darling starling" by Margaret Sigl Corbo.

On Tue, Jan 5, 2016 at 10:11 PM, Kelly Cassidy <highsteppe at icloud.com> wrote:

Starlings seem especially adept at 2 or three note, relatively simple calls. They sometimes do a good copy of California Quail in my yard. When I lived in Seattle, it was disconcerting to hear "wigeons" calling from their perches on the utility wires.

Kelly Cassidy

Pullman, WA

On Jan 5, 2016, at 12:06 PM, Tucker, Trileigh <TRI at seattleu.edu> wrote:


I’ve been fooled by those guys, I’m embarrassed to say. Unless there was a Bald Eagle flying over our rental house at the same altitude and location every single time we happened to be over there, it must have been the starlings who roost in the nearby tree.

Good birding,


~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Trileigh Tucker

Pelly Valley, West Seattle

Natural history blog: naturalpresence <http://naturalpresencearts.com> arts.com <http://naturalpresencearts.com>

Photography: flickr.com/photos/trileigh

From: Michael Brown <michael at flycatcherfile.com>
Date: Monday, January 4, 2016 at 7:51 PM
To: "tweeters at u.washington.edu" <tweeters at u.washington.edu>
Subject: [Tweeters] Starling Mimicry


I recently heard what I think was a Starling mimicking a Bald Eagle. I did not actually see the Starling, and there was an eagle in the vicinity. I heard the call, and first thought BAEA. But then I realized it sounded "off." It had that Starling quality to it. Am I crazy, or is this possible?

Michael Brown

Puyallup, WA

michael at flycatcherfile dot com

Sent from my Verizon Wireless 4G LTE DROID

Tweeters mailing list
Tweeters at u.washington.edu

Tweeters mailing list
Tweeters at u.washington.edu


Devorah Bennu, PhD
birdologist at gmail.com

twitter: @GrrlScientist <https://twitter.com/GrrlScientist>

Forbes blog <http://www.forbes.com/sites/grrlscientist/>

Evolution Institute blog <https://evolution-institute.org/profile/grrlscientist/?source=>

TinyLetter <https://tinyletter.com/grrlscientist>

sunt lacrimae rerum et mentem mortalia tangunt. [Virgil, Aeneid]

More information about the Tweeters mailing list