[Tweeters] Starling mimicry

Bud Anderson falconresearch at gmail.com
Wed Jan 6 12:53:36 PST 2016


Starlings are one of my favorite birds.

According to an old Murrelet article, they first showed up in western WA in
December 1945.

Several years ago, I had a pair nesting in my office building for three
summers.

The male would sit outside my door every morning and run through an amazing
repertoire of calls, many, but not all, species that I recognized. There
were at least 8 that I could ID.

Apparently this is part of their courtship behavior.

Anyway, after awhile, I started to answer him back, running through my
limited (and often laughable) bird calls, red-tails, Coopers Hawks, Pygmy
Owl, and many variants that I just made up on the spot.

Whenever he saw me coming he would launch into song, and then pause. I ran
through mine. Then he would begin again.

Pretty sure we had some sort of relationship gooing on there.

I was sorry when he finally failed to return one spring.

Since then, whenever I see/hear a starling doing his repertoire, I pause to
enjoy the symphony.

Try it out if you are lucky enough to have starlings for neighbors.
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