Starling numbers fall fast

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The Independent Online

The number of starlings seen in people's gardens has fallen by almost four-fifths in the past three decades, the RSPB says today.

The starling has seen a steady decline in numbers most years since the RSPB's Big Garden Birdwatch began in 1979.

This year's survey of garden birds by the public revealed an average of just over three starlings per garden, compared with 15 in 1979, the wildlife charity said.

It is not clear what is causing the declines, though possible causes include changes in their feeding habits and reductions in their insect food in the soil.