Thursday, December 4, 2008

European starlings, house sparrows on decline

Now here is a reason to rejoice. I am a lover of nature but don't like these little buggers at all. The starlings don't bother me as much as the house sparrows, but both are a pain and bullies at the feeder.


I found this article on the right hand side bar of my blog. I am a news junkie and get an RSS feed of all popular news articles relating to birds. I wanted to bring this one to your attention as most of us have problems with these little home wreckers!!



Source: Westford Eagle-Author: Marian Harman


It seems, however, that starlings and house sparrows may now be on the decline. In their recent publication, "Winter Bird Highlights, 2007-08" , Cornell Lab of Ornithology states that reports of starlings in Canada have declined since 1990. Starlings were reported at 65 percent of feeders in 1990, but only at 58% of feeders in 2008. House sparrows were reported at 65 percent of feeders in 1990, and only at 50 percent of feeders in 2008. In the United Kingdom, there has been an even more precipitous decline of house sparrows, which have declined 62% in the last twenty-five years.


In New England, according to Cornell, starlings were reported at 70% of feeders in 1990, and only at 50 percent of feeders in 2000. The average number of starlings at each reporting feeder also declined. House sparrow reports also declined. Sixty percent of feeders reported house sparrows in 1990, while 50% of feeders reported them in 2000. No one is sure why these declines are being seen. It may be that high populations have led to disease and/or loss of habitat for these birds


Go here to read the full article:
http://www.wickedlocal.com/westford/news/lifestyle/columnists/x596328949/European-starlings-house-sparrows-on-decline

10 comments:

Jayne said...

Uh, can I hear an AMEN?

Shellmo said...

I haven't seen one starling at my feeder this year - last year I had a gang of 20. I think mine are on the decline too.

Rich said...

Here in Alaska, the tundra is thawing and the ice is melting. Scary stuff if you really think about it. Our Gov Palin says it is not really man caused though.

Deborah Godin said...

Well, I suppose that's a good thing for us feeder watchers, but still, I'm curious as to why. These days, with all we're doing to the planet, any change/decline is cause for questioning.

NCmountainwoman said...

Much as I detest house sparrows and starlings, it's always alarming to see any bird species on the decline.

Kallen305 said...

I was thinking the same thing driving into work this morning. NPR did a segment last night on what coal mining is doing to our environment. One is the loss of trees as they have to cut down trees so they have places to dump the rock they are blowing up from the mountain. This of course impacts song birds.

I thought of that and then my post this morning and thought if birds with populations as large as house sparrows and starlings are starting to decline, just think about our other birds.

MicheleRF said...

I am so lucky that I have neither of those guys at my feeders!

Rambling Woods said...

Interesting..I don't see starlings in the winter, but I have a flock of about 20 house sparrows that come daily...they are bullies...

Ruth said...

I never have had starlings at my feeders, but the house sparrows come in droves. It all depends where you live. We are in the city and house sparrows are city birds. The feeders we had at the hospital, just 11 km away, never had a house sparrow

Steve B said...

Hmmm...I don't think that either are in any danger. I the other way, I don't mind the house sparrows but detest the starlings. I've seen the starlings force out so many cavity nesters.

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