Pest Away Tips

8 Effective Ways to Manage European Starlings: A Guide to Humane Pest Control

European Starlings: Pest Management and EducationEuropean starlings are one of the most well-known invasive species in the world. Despite their attractive song and striking appearance, these birds cause all sorts of problems for humans and other animals alike.

With an urge to find humane pest management solutions, we must educate ourselves about these notorious birds.

Nuisance and Damage Caused by Starlings

Starlings do not have a pleasant reputation among many people. They sometimes invade homes, buildings, and other structures as a flock, and leave a trail of destruction in its wake.

They wreak havoc by wreaking attics, gutters, and even electronic devices. They produce a large amount of waste, which can cause buildings to stink and create health hazards for humans.

Not only do these flocks damage man-made structures, but they also compete for resources with native species. This can lead to the demise of smaller and less dominant birds.

Starlings are nest parasites, meaning they take over other birds’ nests. This behavior affects the populations of many native birds, like wrens, swallows, bluebirds, and woodpeckers.

Starling aggression also leads to the decline in habitats of woodpeckers, which is important for the natural distribution of insects that better the ecosystem. The aggressiveness of starlings towards other birds also leads to the declining egg-laying rates for other birds in the area.

Humane Pest Management Solutions

Although it is important to control the population, we must do so without causing harm to the birds or the environment. The use of pesticides and lethal trapping is not recommended because it leads to killing other native birds that might consume the poison left by starlings.

One humane solution to deter starlings from invading buildings without harming the species is the use of spikes, nets, and nest boxes. Spikes can be glued, screwed or nailed into the edges of overhangs and rooftops to prevent starlings from entering nesting sites.

Nets can be used to cover large areas like gardens, hence hindering the invasion of these birds. Nest boxes mimic the preferred homes of starlings, which can make them nest in a more desirable spot where they are not causing damage.

What Are European Starlings? Starlings have glossy blue-black feathers with iridescent swirled plumage.

They also have long pointed bills. Adult starlings are described to be about the size of a robin, with a short tail, and a chunky shape to the bird’s body.

The bird’s body weight varies slightly, but an adult typically ranges from 2-3.5 oz. The young starlings have brown bills, brown heads, and whitish bellies.

Their diet consists mainly of insects and beetles, and in breeding season, they increase their protein intake by foraging on fruits and grains. Due to the ability of starlings to forage, they prefer habitats where there are open fields, pastures, and farmland.

They, however, adapt to most habitat types.


In conclusion, European starlings may be fascinating creatures, but the damage and chaos they cause to human society and the ecosystems around them call for management. As we better understand these birds, we can find safe and effective solutions to avoid harm to both people and wildlife.

By promoting humane solutions, we can successfully manage the populations of these invasive species without causing harm to the environment. 3) What Attracts Starlings to My Yard?

Starlings are opportunistic feeders and will eat almost anything available, whether from natural sources or supplied by humans. Their diet consists mainly of insects, fruits, and seeds, but they also consume carrion, garbage, and pet food.

Starlings will also feed on crops, such as grapes, blueberries, cherries, and figs.

To keep starlings from invading your yard, you should avoid providing a food source, such as open garbage cans, unsecured pet food, bird feeders, and compost.

If possible, make use of bird feeders that have openings too small for starlings, but keep in mind that small birds may still be able to access the food. Alternatively, try feeding birds with safflower seeds, which starlings tend to avoid.

Starlings prefer nesting in holes and cavities, which makes buildings with open holes or spaces perfect nesting sites. They often nest in attics, roofs, and walls, and they will use any available nesting material, including grass, feathers, string, twigs, and other debris.

To keep starlings from nesting in your yard, patch up holes in your roof and walls, and use bird netting to keep them out of eaves and other protected areas. Installing birdhouses designed for other bird species can attract native birds, which can help reduce the risk of starlings taking over those nesting sites.

Some birdhouses come with predator guards, which keep starlings at bay while protecting the native bird species.

4) What Kind of Damage Can Starlings Cause?

Starlings can cause serious damage and pose several health hazards. They are known to create large amounts of fecal matter, which can be a breeding ground for bacteria and fungi.

In addition to being unsightly, the droppings can also corrode buildings and vehicles, and cause a bad odor. The droppings can also pose a significant health risk, as they contain histoplasmosis and other infectious diseases.

This fungal respiratory disease can cause flu-like symptoms and lead to severe respiratory illness in high-risk individuals. It is therefore important to clean up the starling droppings and dispose of them properly.

Starling nests pose another danger, particularly if they are built in vents and chimneys. When nests go undiscovered, they can block air flow, leading to the accumulation of toxic gases like carbon monoxide, which can be fatal.

Starlings have also been known to destroy insulation materials, which can lead to drafts and energy loss. They can also cause damage to plants and crops, by eating the fruit or stripping the buds for nesting material.

In addition to the physical harm caused by starlings, there is also a significant economic cost associated with their presence. The cost of cleaning up after starlings can be expensive, and the damage they cause to buildings, such as the corrosion of metal gutters and siding, can be even more costly.

The agricultural costs, including reduced crop yield and crop loss, can also be a significant monetary burden. In conclusion, starlings can be a significant problem for homeowners and farmers.

Understanding what attracts them and the type of damage they can cause is key to managing their populations. By providing no food source and securing nesting sites, we can deter starlings from invading our property.

Cleaning up droppings and preventing nests from blocking vents and chimneys can also help protect our health. By adopting these prevention measures, we can stay ahead of possible starling-related damage and hazards.

5) How to Get Rid of Starlings Quickly & Humanely

Removing starlings from your property can be a difficult task, especially since they can nest in hard-to-reach areas like roofs, attics, chicken coops, and barns. However, there are several humane and effective ways to remove starlings from your property.

The first step is to identify the areas where the starlings are nesting. If they are in hard-to-reach areas, it may be necessary to hire a professional to safely remove them.

A pest control expert can provide advice and assistance on how to safely and humanely remove starlings. One humane way to prevent starlings from nesting is to seal up potential nesting sites.

This can be done by installing bird netting or other barriers to prevent the birds from gaining access. Spikes and other deterrents can also be used to discourage them from landing and perching in certain areas.

If you want to keep starlings away from your yard, the use of visual repellents such as scarecrows, balloons, or reflective tape can be effective. Visual repellents work by making the birds feel threatened and unsafe.

For those who are okay with using sound deterrents, the use of sonic devices or recordings of starling distress calls to keep the birds at bay can be effective. High-pitched sound frequencies can make the birds feel uncomfortable, and they may vacate the premises.

Another option is to use live-trapping and relocation. However, this should be done with caution, as trapping and relocating starlings can be stressful and dangerous for the birds.

In most cases, relocation should only be carried out by licensed professionals to ensure the bird’s well-being. 6) How do Pest Control Experts Get Rid of Starlings?

Pest control experts use a wide range of bird control products to deter starlings, particularly bird netting, spikes, and other deterrents that prevent the bird from alighting on or nesting in certain areas. Bird netting is a highly efficient bird control solution that provides a physical barrier to keep birds away.

It can be used on large open spaces or areas where birds could nest or roost. In general, bird netting is cost-effective and can last for several years.

Spikes, on the other hand, provide an effective physical barrier that stops starlings from landing or nesting in a specific location. Spikes come in many sizes and shapes, allowing them to fit the targeted surface area perfectly.

Pest control experts evaluate the property and needs of the client to determine the best spikes for the job. Ultrasonic devices are another commonly used bird control tactic.

These devices emit high-frequency sounds that can’t be perceived by humans. The frequency can irritate and disorient starlings, making them leave the premises.

Combinations of deterrents are often more effective than using only one. Pest control experts design custom solutions based on the needs of the particular property and property owner.

The knowledgeable professionals inspect the area to be treated and offer a plan that provides maximum protection while minimizing harm to target animals. In conclusion, the removal of starlings should be done with the utmost care, to avoid causing harm to the animals or the environment.

By adopting humane and effective prevention measures, we can keep starlings from invading our property. Pest control experts use a variety of bird control products, including bird netting, spikes, and other deterrents, to remove and prevent starlings from inhabiting specific areas.

By working with professionals, we can ensure that the removal of starlings from a particular area is done safely and humanely.

7) 4 Proven Starling Prevention Tips

Preventing starlings from taking up residence in your property is much easier than getting rid of them once they have established themselves. Below are some tips for preventing starlings from accessing your property and discouraging them from nesting:


Remove Food and Water Sources- Starlings are attracted to sources of food and water. Eliminating these sources can reduce the attractiveness of your space to starlings.

Don’t leave open garbage cans, remove standing water sources, and avoid leaving pet food and water out overnight. 2.

Alter Landscape – Starlings prefer open spaces, making it easier to identify predators and food sources. You can avoid open spaces by growing dense vegetation that minimizes the available space.

Trees can be an excellent example of natural vegetation that can grow in your garden. 3.

Use Noise Devices – Starlings are sensitive to loud noises, which can serve as a great way of scaring them off your property. Devices that produce loud noises such as sirens and electronic alarms can be effective, although you should ensure that your neighbors are not disturbed by the noise.

4. Install Barriers – Starlings will avoid landing or perching in areas where they cannot gain a foothold.

You can install bird spikes or netting on ledges, signs, and other areas where starlings tend to congregate. These barriers will discourage starlings from invading your space.

By adopting these starling prevention tips, you can keep these birds at bay and protect your property from damage and health hazards. 8)


In conclusion, European starlings are a common invasive species that pose a significant problem for homeowners.

They often invade homes, buildings and other structures, producing large amounts of waste and causing significant damage. Their aggressive nature impacts native bird species, leading to a decrease in populations.

It is essential to remove them as soon as possible.

Preventing starlings requires a combination of factors, including eliminating food and water sources, altering the landscape, using noise devices, and installing barriers.

It is essential to employ humane pest control tactics to avoid harming the birds or the environment. Professional pest control experts use an effective approach to removing starlings from different locations.

They make use of humane tactics such as bird netting and deterrents that limit the starling’s access to the area. Pest control experts can also tailor their plan according to the unique pest issue in your property.

By working with professionals, property owners can achieve effective starling removal while keeping both the birds and the habitat safe. Adopting preventative measures and quickly removing starlings when detected, can save property owners and farmers a significant amount of money in repair and loss prevention costs.

In conclusion, European starlings pose a significant problem for homeowners and farmers. They cause damage to property, compete for resources with native species, and often carry the risk of disease.

Preventative measures like eliminating food and water sources, altering the landscape, using noise devices, and barriers can be employed to control starling populations. Quick and humane removal is also key.

Professional pest control experts have effective strategies and tactics to eliminate starlings while keeping both the birds and the habitat safe. By adopting these approaches, property owners can protect their property from damage and avoid the cost of repairs and loss prevention.

In the end, it is important to take swift action to prevent the spread of these invasive species and maintain a healthy, balanced ecosystem.

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