What to Do If You Find a Starling Nest?

Birdwatchers and nature-lovers, rejoice! If you chance upon a starling’s nest, fear not. I’ll help you know what to do. Starlings are known for their beautiful feathers and melodious songs. Let’s explore their world!

When you find a starling’s nest, it’s important to remember not to disturb or remove it. These nests are essential shelters for the birds and their chicks. They build them with twigs, leaves, and other natural materials, and they’re usually high up in trees or on human-made structures.

If you get the chance to spot a starling nest, take a moment to watch them. You might see adults coming and going with food, or hear their sweet chirping. It’s a great opportunity to appreciate nature!

Did you know starlings are famous for their mimicry skills? They can imitate other birds and even sounds from their environment – showing their intelligence and ability to adapt. (National Geographic)

Identifying a Starling Nest

Starlings make intricate nests in various places. To spot one, do the following:

  1. Look for dome-shaped nests with a small entrance. These often have soft lining like feathers or moss.
  2. Check places like tree holes, wall cavities, and bird boxes.
  3. Notice starlings taking away debris from the nest. This means the nest is active.
  4. Listen for melodious songs that male starlings sing near the nesting site.
  5. Observe adult starlings bringing food to one place. It could be a hidden nest.

Knowledge of why these methods work can help you find a starling nest. Recognizing the shape and lining materials is a great start. Looking for traits like cavity locations and cleaning behaviors narrows down potential sites. Listening to songs helps locate breeding areas. Feeding patterns tell you where chicks are being cared for.

Understanding Starling Behavior

To understand starling behavior effectively, delve into the section “Understanding Starling Behavior” with its sub-sections: Nesting Habits of Starlings, Nesting Locations. These sections provide valuable insights into the behaviors and tendencies of starlings when it comes to nesting, helping you navigate encounters with starling nests more knowledgeably.

Nesting Habits of Starlings

Starlings showcase their resourcefulness and adaptability through their interesting nesting habits. They usually build their nests in trees, but they also nest in the eaves of buildings and natural hiding spots such as crevices. This flexibility allows them to thrive in different environments and successfully raise their young. The National Audubon Society also notes that starlings are highly social birds, forming large flocks during the non-breeding seasons.

Nesting Locations

Starlings show amazing adaptability when it comes to choosing a nesting spot. They can nest in natural cavities, human structures, birdhouses, and vegetation. Urban environments are no challenge for them!

Furthermore, they tend to live in colonies with other bird species. Johnson et al.’s study at Cornell found that starlings prefer to nest close to one another. This arrangement gives them better protection against predators and improved chances of breeding successfully.

To sum up, starlings select their nests based on their safety, accessibility, and resources. This flexibility makes them incredible in the avian world!

What to Do If You Find a Starling Nest

To handle a starling nest discovery, assess the situation, consider legal aspects, and determine if intervention is necessary. Seek guidance from a wildlife professional, and if required, set up a barrier or proceed with nest removal.

Assess the Situation

When it comes to a starling nest, assessing the situation is key. Here are some steps to follow:

  1. Check the location: is it safe and far from windows/electrical fixtures?
  2. Look at the nestlings: are they young or old? For younger ones, leave them be; but older birds may need help leaving.
  3. Are any birds injured/distressed/abandoned? If so, contact experts for advice.
  4. Preserve natural processes, don’t interfere too much. Use gentle nudging or obstacles to stop the birds from coming back.

Legal Considerations

If you discover a starling nest, legal considerations must be taken into account. Here’s the scoop: Ownership is protected by law; it’s illegal to disturb or destroy an active nest without permission. The Migratory Bird Treaty Act defends starlings and their nests, and penalties may result from violation. There are exceptions, like if the nest is a health or safety hazard. Then, it’s best to contact local authorities for advice. As individuals, we should take care of wildlife and their habitats, being aware of starling nests and taking the correct action inside the law. To remain legal, always check with local authorities or wildlife experts on how to manage starling nests correctly. Respect these legal considerations! It not only guarantees the starlings’ well-being, but also preserves our ecosystem for future generations. Don’t miss this chance to make a difference!

Determine the Need for Intervention

If you spot a starling nest, it’s crucial to decide whether to get involved. Here’s what you should do:

  1. Assess the situation. Check if the nest looks abandoned or if adults are around. This helps understand if they need help or can manage alone.
  2. Also, see where the nest is located. If it’s near electric wires or ventilation systems, intervention might be necessary. Contact wildlife rehabilitation centers or bird conservation organizations for advice on safe relocation.
  3. Think about the nestlings’ development stage. If they can’t fend for themselves, they may need help. But, if they’re close to fledging, it’s best to let nature take its course.
  4. If intervention is required, seek professional advice first. Understand legal regulations and how to proceed without harming birds or breaking laws.

Bottom line, when you find a starling nest, assess the need for intervention. By observing and considering abandonment, location, and development stages, you can make decisions that prioritize bird welfare and human safety.

Contacting a Wildlife Professional

If you find a starling nest, it’s best to get help from a wildlife expert. Give them all details such as the nest’s location, size, and any worries. Try not to touch the nest – it may be illegal as starlings are protected in many places. Check with local authorities for advice, if the nest is causing big problems or is dangerous.

Finally, install bird deterrents such as reflectors or sound devices to stop starlings from nesting there in the future. Professional help is essential when dealing with wildlife – they make sure people and animals are safe, and provide solutions that work for everyone.

Creating a Barrier

When dealing with a starling nest, it is important to create a barrier to keep them away. Deterrents like bird spikes, nets, or noise machines can do the job. This way, you can protect your property and reduce potential damages caused by these birds.

Barrier Type Effectiveness Cost
Bird Spikes Highly effective in preventing landing or perching Moderate cost depending on area coverage
Nets Effective in completely blocking access to the nest site Relatively inexpensive and easy to install
Noise Machines Deters starlings with loud noises, disrupting their nesting behavior Varies in cost depending on the type of machine used

Removing the Nest (if necessary)

Need to Remove the Nest?

If you need to take out a starling nest on your property, it’s important to do it carefully and responsibly. Here’s a guide:

  1. Assess: Check the nest from a safe distance. See if it causes any problems. Consider leaving it if it doesn’t.
  2. Legality: Check if removing the nest is allowed in your area. Some birds are protected, so tampering may be illegal. Contact wildlife authorities for advice.
  3. Plan: Wear protective gear like gloves and goggles. Use a long-handled tool, like a broom or rake, to remove the nest. Don’t damage anything or harm birds. Place it in a sealed bag and throw it away properly.
  4. Consequences: Interfering with nests can have bad effects for birds and people. Get professional advice.
  5. Fledglings: If you find birds without nests, monitor them and get help from local wildlife rehab professionals if needed.

Take action responsibly and protect your property while respecting nature!


Discovering a starling nest? Handle with caution! Disturbing it without knowledge can be dangerous for you and the birds. In many countries, starlings are protected by law; interfering can lead to legal consequences. The nests may contain eggs or baby birds – removing them can hurt their development. Consult local wildlife authorities or experts before taking action. If the nest is in an inconvenient spot, like your attic or chimney, get professional help. Wildlife rehabilitation centers and pest control services know how to handle these situations without harming the birds. Each nest is unique – expert advice is key. Ignoring these guidelines can disrupt nature and put you at risk. Act responsibly and get advice when needed. You’ll help preserve wildlife and satisfy your curiosity in a humane way.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What should I do if I find a starling nest in my yard?

A: If you find a starling nest in your yard, it is best to leave it alone. Starlings are protected birds, and disturbing their nests or eggs without proper permits may be illegal.

Q: Can I relocate a starling nest to a different location?

A: It is generally not recommended to relocate a starling nest. Starlings are highly adaptable and may abandon the relocated nest, causing unnecessary stress to the birds.

Q: How long do starlings typically nest in one place?

A: Starlings usually nest in one place for about four to six weeks. Once their young are fully fledged, they will leave the nest and find other areas to feed and roost.

Q: Are starling nests dangerous or harmful to humans?

A: Starling nests are not inherently dangerous or harmful to humans. However, their droppings can create a mess and may carry potential health risks, so it is important to take precautions and keep areas clean if you are near a nest.

Q: How can I deter starlings from nesting in unwanted areas?

A: To deter starlings from nesting in unwanted areas, you can limit food sources, block potential nesting sites, and use bird deterrents like reflective materials or noise devices. However, be sure to check local regulations before taking any actions.

Q: Who should I contact if I have concerns about a starling nest?

A: If you have concerns about a starling nest or need assistance, it is best to contact your local wildlife agency, animal control, or a licensed wildlife rehabilitator for guidance and assistance.

Julian Goldie - Owner of ChiperBirds.com

Julian Goldie

I'm a bird enthusiast and creator of Chipper Birds, a blog sharing my experience caring for birds. I've traveled the world bird watching and I'm committed to helping others with bird care. Contact me at [email protected] for assistance.