Do Starlings Steal Eggs?

Starlings don’t have the best reputation, they tend to be very vocal with bullying tendencies.

I wondered if a bit of squawking and pushing and shoving was as far as it went or if starlings steal eggs or kill other birds?

Birds eggs are a great source of nutrition and starlings are aware of this. Although they rarely steal them, they sometimes eat them in the nest that they find them.

If the starling sees a nest that they want they bully parent birds, holding on to them with claws and pecking at them. Once they’re in the nest they dump out any eggs and nestlings, killing them.

Do starlings steal eggs?

They are fond of sparrow’s nests, probably as sparrows are a smaller bird and easier to bully. Eggs are a treat and the starling uses its strong, pincer-like beak to crack a hole in the shell and suck out the contents.

They don’t steal the eggs or take them anywhere, either they eat them in the nest or they dump them over the top of the nest as they make it their own. Sadly, the same fate befalls any hatchlings, they are unceremoniously thrown from the nest and don’t survive the fall.

Do starlings kill other birds?

Starlings are noisy, feisty birds that protect their territoryfiercely. However, this isn’t the reason that they attack or kill other birds, it is because they want their nests. Starlings evict birds from their nests whatever the consequences.

If a starling wants a site, they usually get it. It isn’t unheard of for them to build a new nest atop an existing one, regardless of whether there are eggs or hatchlings inside.

The babies obviously won’t survive this and their parents will abandon them, knowing any fightback will probably be fruitless.

Starlings will often attack cavity-nesting birds as they’re lining their nests. They’re not afraid to launch a group attack, often 2 or 3 starlings with fight claw and beak, either to the death or until the opponent concedes and gives up their nest.


Starlings are aggressive birds that are used to getting their own way.

When they don’t, they fight, often resulting in the death of the other bird.

Although starlings occasionally eat eggs, they don’t steal eggs but they do kill other birds.

They are funny birds to watch at times, but they definitely have a mean streak!

4 thoughts on “Do Starlings Steal Eggs?”

  1. There were a pair if sparrows nesting in our guttering. One day I heard the sparrows making a lot of aggravated noise and saw a starling pecking at the nest. The sparrows flew off and shortly later the starling. There has been no activity since. So I assume the starling ate the eggs. .

  2. This is an interesting article which confirmed my thoughts of some years, however I believe through development locally the aggressive nature of stallings is evolving into something quite concerning for other species. We make some effort to ensure sparrows and small finches and warblers get fed but find we are playing a strategic game with starlings as they have increased in numbers, aggression and cunning over the last ten or so years. Waiting for food to out a bird “on watch” will often seem to call up support to drive off any other birds. They also seem to patrol the area for this advantage!

  3. Thanks for your information. Now I understand what I’ve been seeing from my window for three months. A nest of sparrows is being attacked by a starling. He has killed two clutches and the sparrow. It now harasses the male sparrow on a daily basis, which is being silent and cautious to avoid further attacks. But he receives a daily visit from the starling and the second female sparrow has also disappeared. Greetings from Spain


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