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Old Feb 7, 2010, 2:15 PM   #1
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Default Aaaaarrrrrrrrrrrrrgh!!

I wouldn't mind 1 or 2 but these guys get ridiculous!







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Old Feb 7, 2010, 2:32 PM   #2
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You are aware that they are illegal immigrants?

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Old Feb 7, 2010, 3:10 PM   #3
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A bowl of javex mixed with draino. Hold the colorful gas over the birds and voila.
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Old Feb 7, 2010, 3:47 PM   #4
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The truth is, I have nothing against Starlings. They were imported into North America because some immigrants missed their singing - And they are beautiful singers.

At first, they heavily competed with native birds, but things have more or less sorted themselves out...

At certain times of the year, they deal with the problems of kids who don't want to leave home...



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Old Feb 7, 2010, 8:46 PM   #5
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LOL. That's what you get when you offer free lunch.
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Old Feb 8, 2010, 6:45 AM   #6
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LOL. That's what you get when you offer free lunch.
I have to figure out some sort of device to deter them but not the other "nice" birds. This is insane.
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Old Feb 8, 2010, 12:55 PM   #7
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At first, they heavily competed with native birds, but things have more or less sorted themselves out...Dave
Dave, I have to agree with Gary. Starlings [and English (House) Sparrows] are a curse on this continent. They compete with native hole nesting birds for nest sites - they would have driven Bluebirds and Purple Martins to near extinction if it were not for human intervention in the form of artificially maintained nest box programs (which also help maintain swallows). Out here in the West where Acorn Woodpeckers roost communally in the winter, when they leave to return to their individual nest cavities from the previous year, they find them already occupied by Starlings which nest earlier, and the Western Population of Purple Martins has declined precipitously - I used to see migrants every year, but no more . . . .

While we never think of it in this context, these birds are a legacy of Colonialism. In the late Nineteenth Century, wherever English settlers went, they established Acclimatization Societies to bring familiar English birds to their new homelands. One person went so far as to try to introduce every bird mentioned by Shakespeare to New York City's Central Park! Starlings were also introduced in a misguided attempt at biological control of Gypsy Moths and Japanese Beetles - of course the Starlings found other things preferable! English Sparrows spread rapidly across the continent, following horses, which left a rich supply of undigested grain in the streets for them. There are colonies of Skylarks, Tree Sparrows, and Ring-necked Doves that have yet to become problems. These are not the only nonnative species here, but that is another story. . . .

If things have "sorted themselves out," it has been at the expense of native species.
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Old Feb 9, 2010, 5:26 PM   #8
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Dave, I have to agree with Gary. Starlings [and English (House) Sparrows] are a curse on this continent. They compete with native hole nesting birds for nest sites - they would have driven Bluebirds and Purple Martins to near extinction if it were not for human intervention in the form of artificially maintained nest box programs (which also help maintain swallows). Out here in the West where Acorn Woodpeckers roost communally in the winter, when they leave to return to their individual nest cavities from the previous year, they find them already occupied by Starlings which nest earlier, and the Western Population of Purple Martins has declined precipitously - I used to see migrants every year, but no more . . . .

While we never think of it in this context, these birds are a legacy of Colonialism. In the late Nineteenth Century, wherever English settlers went, they established Acclimatization Societies to bring familiar English birds to their new homelands. One person went so far as to try to introduce every bird mentioned by Shakespeare to New York City's Central Park! Starlings were also introduced in a misguided attempt at biological control of Gypsy Moths and Japanese Beetles - of course the Starlings found other things preferable! English Sparrows spread rapidly across the continent, following horses, which left a rich supply of undigested grain in the streets for them. There are colonies of Skylarks, Tree Sparrows, and Ring-necked Doves that have yet to become problems. These are not the only nonnative species here, but that is another story. . . .

If things have &quot;sorted themselves out,&quot; it has been at the expense of native species.
While your point about the dangers of importing non native species is perfectly valid, it is we, Humanity, who has altered the habitats of most of these birds to the point where the environment no longer supports them. Much like the importation of Carp was called a disaster to trout and bass. Overfishing was the cause of the decline. All of these fish live quite happily now that we have rules and limits. I'm not defending those who imported these birds, but Starlings were NOT brought here to combat gypsy moths, they were imported back in the 19th century. Dave
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Old Feb 9, 2010, 9:34 PM   #9
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Starlings were NOT brought here to combat gypsy moths, they were imported back in the 19th century. Dave
So were the Gypsy Moths - in fact they were here first. Gypsy Moths were brought here in 1868 for experimental purpose and escaped from the laboratory in 1868 or 1869. The year in which a few Starlings were introduced into Central Park (far from the New England infestations) along with other Shakespearian birds for aesthetic purposes was some time after 1871 (the founding date of the American Acclimatization Society) - the date I have seen is 1890, long after the moth was established, however that was not the only release of the bird in this country. That one introduction is popularly thought to be the source of the birds that plague us now, but there is no proof that it was the only successful one, or that it was the sole source of the birds in other later releases. Starlings have proved to be major predators of the moths in Europe, and it was hoped they would be as effective here - they do eat them, but they have not proven to be nearly as effective as had been hoped, and are a serious problem themselves. Even if birds released in infested areas were trapped in New York rather than being imported again, the establishment of new populations certainly would have aided their spread.
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