• East view from Crissy Field overlook with old Coast Guard station on left and city on right

    Presidio of San Francisco

    California

European Starling

(Sturnus vulgaris)
 
European Starling
European Starling at Crissy Field.
Will Elder, NPS
 

Natural History: The European Starling is an introduced species in the Presidio. It eats invertebrates, seeds, fruits, and garbage, foraging in open habitats. It often roosts in large flocks. The Starling nests in cavities, crevices, nest boxes, outcompeting many native cavity nesters.

General Distribution: In the Presidio, this species can be found in annual grasslands, all forests, and all developed areas. It breeds in the Presidio.

Frequency: This species is abundant all year.

Identifying Characteristics: The European Starling is usually black in color with a glossy purple coat in the spring. It has a long, yellow bill. The bird takes on a speckled appearance in the winter.

Presidio Birds main page

Did You Know?

U.S. Army major rank insignia

In 1915, a tragic fire at the Presidio claimed the lives of General Pershing’s wife and his three daughters. Pershing's son, Francis Warren, survived the blaze and chose to enlist in the army as a private during World War II. By the end of the war he had achieved the rank of major.