The local starling colony has clearly fledged its young, and the garden is filled with hordes of these noisy, argumentative, clownish teenagers - some still being fed by Mum and Dad. They're currently getting through ten suet balls a day - definitely eating us out of house and home!
But we feel very lucky to have so many - the starling is now a Red Listed bird in Britain, one of the species associated with agriculture to have shown significant population declines. The decline in the UK started during the early 1980s and has continued ever since. Recent data from the Breeding Bird Survey suggest continuing population declines affecting starlings in England and Wales since 1995. The cause of the starling decline in the UK is unknown.