Metallic and Purple Glossy Starlings

Metallic Starling

Scientific Name:
Aplonis metallica

Range:
moluccas, New Guinea, Australia, Solomon Islands

Habitat:
Rainforest, scrub forest, mangrove swamps

Average Size:
Length: 9 inches
Weight: 2 oz

Lifespan:
Undocumented

Diet:
Wild: Insects, fruit and nectar

Zoo: Various produce, mealworms and crickets

Reproduction:
Incubation: 14-16 days
Clutch size: 1-3 eggs, multiple clutches per year

IUCN Status:
Least Concern (LC)

6669999_orig

Scientific Name:
Lamprotornis purpureus

Range:
From Senegal and Zaire east to the Sudan and Kenya

Habitat:
Open woodlands, savannahs, scrublands and cultivated areas

Average Size:
Length: 7 inches
Weight: average undocumented

Lifespan:
Undocumented

Diet:
Wild: Insects, fruit and grain

Zoo: Various produce, mealworms and crickets

Reproduction:
Incubation: about 13 days
Clutch size: 2-4 eggs

IUCN Status:
Least Concern (LC)

About the Animal
These starling species are considered two of the ‘glossy starlings’, referring to the beautiful sheen of the feathers. These species are as common in parts of their respective ranges as robins are in the United States.

Mating and Reproduction
Purple Glossy Starling pairs engage in courtship behavior that includes jumping on the ground with wings trailing and singing to one another. Preferred nesting sites include thorn bushes, low bushes, and cliff hollows. Purple Glossy Starlings prefer to nest in holes found in old trees, which they line with feathers and plant material. Males and females share responsibility for nest construction.

Metallic Starlings have similar courtship behavior, but will gather into large nesting colonies that can include more than 400 nests in a single, large tree. Nests are ornate but messy globular, hanging structures

Hatchlings are cared for not only by the parents, but also by related and non-related younger birds, especially during years of unpredictable rainfall.

Amazing Information
Some birders have noted that during the height of mating season, Purple Glossy Starling males are such enthusiastic swains that they will even sing in the middle of the night when the moon is full in order to attract a female.

An Australian scientist discovered that beneath tree that support large nesting colonies of Metallic Starlings, an entire seasonal ecosystem forms during the breeding season. These ecosystems can include up to 100,000 species of plants, invertebrates and animals, all who depend upon the presence of the nestling starlings to survive