Monday Portrait

Over on my other blog – The Life of B – I am running a challenge. It is all about squares and the word odd. This shot was originally planned for there today, but something else popped up so I thought I would share these fabulous starlings here instead.

There are seven of them, which is why they nearly appeared on my other blog today the 7th of February. However that’s not the only reason why these Spotless Starlings fit the theme of odd. When we first came across them in Portugal we thought them an odd starling because of their lack of spots. Just out my first post on them here in the beautiful setting of Cacela Velha.

Now of course we know better and think them rather lovely. They are only to be found in northwest African, southernmost France, the islands of Sardinia, Sicily and Corsica and of course here on the Iberian Peninsula where they are regularly seen in urban settings as well as in rural areas. Their Portuguese name is ‘Estorninho-preto’, which means Black Starling which is probably a more accurate name as they are jet black and in the winter months they do have faint spots. Click play below to listen to their call and song.

An Xeno-Canto recording by Jordi Calvet
Esparreguera, Catalonia, Spain

And just in case you can’t quite see why they are visually different, here’s a comparison of them beside their more commonly known relative, the Common Starling. You’ll also discover more detailed description here, including video, on the Aves de Portugal site.

Author: BeckyB

It had been a good life walking, cooking, photographing, volunteering, blogging, and best of all spending time with MrB, family, & friends. Sadly it no longer is. Suddenly and unexpectedly I have become a widow.

19 thoughts

    1. Think you are the first to spot that – always one that seems to face the other direction. I wonder if it is to watch out for predators?

  1. Much lower population,less noisy,than the northern spotted variety.Sitting on the terrace in western Olhao,might be a pair ,in summer,and have never seen a murmeration in portugal or Spain

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