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Everyone has probably seen flocks of European Starlings, sometimes numbering in the thousands, flying as swarms over open fields. They are capable of incredible communications among themselves that allow the whole swarm to instantly change direction or reverse course as if they were all just one bird. Here’s part of such a swarm that I saw last week at the refuge.

Part of a swarm of European Starlings.

Following are some shots of a juvenile bird that landed on the side of the road very close to my car. There were also Red-winged Blackbirds mixed in with the Starlings.

Juvenile European Starling.

Juvenile European Starling.

Juvenile European Starling.

For comparison, here’s a photo of an adult bird taken this past winter during a snowstorm.

European Starling.