Golden-Breasted Starling

Golden-Breasted Starling

Birds

SCIENTIFIC CLASSIFICATION

COMMON NAME: golden-breasted starling, royal starling
KINGDOM: Animalia
PHYLUM: Chordata
CLASS: Aves
ORDER: Passeriformes
FAMILY: Sturnidae
GENUS SPECIES: Cosmopsarus regius

FAST FACTS

DESCRIPTION: The golden-breasted starling is a small bird with a bright, blue tail and a blue back. It has a green head, white eyes, blue-violet wings, and a yellow breast, belly, and upper tail covers.
SIZE: 30-37.5 cm (12-15 in.); wingspan 11.5-13 cm (4.6-5.6 in.)
WEIGHT: No data
DIET: Mostly feeds on insects and fruits
INCUBATION: 11-14 days
CLUTCH SIZE 3-5 eggs
FLEDGING DURATION Approximately 3 weeks
SEXUAL MATURITY: No data
LIFE SPAN: 1.2-1.4 years
RANGE: Northeast Africa
HABITAT: Inhabits arid regions
POPULATION: GLOBAL Unknown
STATUS: IUCN Not listed
CITES Not listed
USFWS Not listed

FUN FACTS

1. In some regions, starlings are also referred to as grackles.
2. Starlings live in small family groups of 3-12 members and are very noisy.
3. Golden-breasted starlings exhibit cooperative breeding, where group members assist with nest-building and feeding the young. In this sort of arrangement, breeding females often solicit food from other members of the group to feed to the young. She crouches and quivers while gaping and vocalizing. The group either ignores her and feeds the young themselves, or gives her part of the food to feed the young, or gives her all the food.
4. Starlings live mainly on insects, termites being a favorite. They catch the termites by opening their ground tunnels with rapid flicks of their bill.
5. Golden-breasted starlings nest in tree holes, often made and abandoned by woodpeckers.

ECOLOGY AND CONSERVATION

Although starlings and mynah birds, are native to Africa and southeast Asia, some were intentionally introduced to North America, Hawaii, and Australia to aid in insect control.

BIBLIOGRAPHY

Austin, G. Birds of the World. Golden Press, Inc., New York. 1961.

Gotch, A.F. Birds - Their Latin Names Explained. Poole, Dorst: Blandford Press, 1981.

Perrins, C. Birds: Their Life, Their Ways, Their World. New York: The Reader's Digest Association, Inc. 1979.

Perrins, C. M. and A. L.A. Middleton, eds. The Encyclopedia of Birds. New York: Facts on File Pub. 1985.

Perrins, C. M. The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Birds: The Definitive Reference to Birds of the World. New York: Prentice Hall Press. 1990.

honoluluzoo.org/Golden-breasted_Starling.htm