European Starling eating Brine flies on the shoreline of the Great Salt Lake

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European Starling eating Brine flies on the shoreline of the Great Salt LakeEuropean Starling eating Brine flies on the shoreline of the Great Salt Lake

Last week I was photographing shorebirds and a Chukar eating Brine flies on the shore of the Great Salt Lake when this European Starling flew in and started to eat them too. I was surprised to see the European Starling eating brine flies because they are relative newcomers to North America and it seems that they have adapted to the hyper-saline environment around the salty lake and are taking advantage of the abundance of brine flies there. Now I can add European Starlings to my list of birds I have observed and photographed eating the brine flies here.

Mia

14 Comments

  1. Ilze Long June 24, 2013 at 10:38 am

    Good to know that SOMEONE is eating those pesky brine flies…I hope by the hundreds

    • Mia McPherson June 25, 2013 at 12:37 pm

      Ilze, even with all the birds that do eat the brine flies there is an abundance of them, I am just very happy that brine flies don’t bite!!

  2. Patty chadwick June 21, 2013 at 1:39 pm

    That’s just the way I like starlings…salted! The starlings invaded our area years ago, forcing many of our native songbirds out…they gobble uo food, take over nesting sites and “decorate” everything under them. They are noisy and aggressive.

  3. Lynn Koch June 21, 2013 at 1:34 pm

    Beautiful shot of the Starling, Mia! Their feathers are a really lovely mix of colors and in this light they are gorgeously iridescent.

  4. eric c11 June 21, 2013 at 12:28 pm

    nice picture for this starling =))
    here in migration, you can have thousands and thounsands in a flying cloug, very impressive
    have a nice day mia ☼

    • Mia McPherson June 22, 2013 at 8:56 am

      Thanks Eric. We get those Starling murmurations in the fall & winter here too, they are hypnotizing!

  5. Jane Chesebrough June 21, 2013 at 9:29 am

    Nice colouring, I guess starlings aren’t so bad after all.

    • Mia McPherson June 22, 2013 at 8:56 am

      Jane, they are even more flashy in the winter!

  6. M. Firpi June 21, 2013 at 8:08 am

    We don’t have Starlings here but I saw them in FL. It was a flying spectacle.

    • Mia McPherson June 22, 2013 at 8:55 am

      Maria, the Starling numbers in Florida are amazing!

  7. Bob Bushell June 21, 2013 at 7:33 am

    The Starling is pretty bird, but, I wouldn’t have thought he want to eat salt. Have a nice time away Mia.

    • Mia McPherson June 22, 2013 at 8:55 am

      Hi Bob, the Starling is actually eating the Brine Flies, they exist in tremendous numbers near the Great Salt Lake because they thrive in the hyper saline lake.

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