Metallic starling

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Metallic starling
Metallic Starling RWD1.jpg
At Cairns, Australia
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Passeriformes
Family: Sturnidae
Genus: Aplonis
Species: A. metallica
Binomial name
Aplonis metallica
(Temminck, 1824)

The metallic starling (Aplonis metallica), also known as the shining starling, is a bird in the starling family native to the Moluccas, New Guinea, Queensland and the Solomon Islands.


Immature at San Diego Zoo
Male at San Diego Zoo, California, USA

The adult has brilliant red eyes, a long forked tail and green-glossed black plumage. Immatures are pale below with dark streaks.


They are very social and flocks of them build messy suspended globular nests in tall rain forest trees where they breed, possibly only during the wet season (north-west monsoon, October–March) (observed at Kokopo, East New Britain Province, 2016). They are not fearful of humans and their activity on the ground below, being well separated from them by altitude, but a loud noise will see them fly out in a tight formation, circle, then return to their nests. Their movement is very fast. During the early part of the 20th century, a flock (or flocks) were seen to migrate during August[2] to Dunk Island in far north Queensland, where they mate, preparing messy globular nests for their young which hang from tall trees.[3] There they remain until April,[2] whereupon they make their return journey to New Guinea.[4] They are also seen in other areas of Queensland including Kuranda in the Atherton Tablelands, and Mossman Gorge.[4]



  1. ^ BirdLife International (2012). "Aplonis metallica". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved 26 November 2013.
  2. ^ a b Banfield, E.J. "Alike in Difference." Emu. Vol. 17, No. 4, 212-214. 1917. Accessed 2009-05-25.
  3. ^ "Plants and Animals in the Wet tropics. Archived 2009-05-19 at the Wayback Machine." Wet Tropics Management Authority. Accessed 2009-05-25.
  4. ^ a b "metallic starling". Retrieved 2017-01-08.

External links[edit]