Appearance The Greater Blue-eared Starling is a small, 9" (23cm) bird and one of the "Glossy Starlings". To appreciate the glossy effect, one must see them in good sunlight, its irridescent blue-green plumage having dark blue-purple ear-coverts and in front of the eyes - in poor light these lkook black. In good light, other colours can be seen in the plumage, including purples. The wings show rows of black spots. The underparts are purple-blue. The eyes are orange or yellow. Legs and feet are black.
Habits Greater Blue-eared Starlings are sociable birds and happy to be near humans and habitation. They are often seen in the company of other birds and can be bullies, when a smaller bird has found a food source.
Diet Greater Blue-eared Starlings eat seeds, fruit (especially figs), but mostly insects, taken from both the ground and trees. They will eat pretty much anything left for them by humans.
Resident Greater Blue-eared Starlings are seen in Kenya's central, west and coastal areas, up to 3,000 metres. They prefer savanna, open bushland or cultivated areas, including garden.
Extra Greater Blue-eared Starling Facts The Greater Blue-eared Starling's call is a memorable "pa-a-at", like a screetching old woman, whose husband's name is Pat...! The Greater Blue-eared Starling often takes over old Woodpecker holes in trees, to nest in. The Great Spotted Cuckoo parasitises the Greater Blue-eared Starling (lays eggs in its nest).
Photographs Photographed at Kenya's Masai Mara and Olare Orok Conservancy.