WATCH: Baby starlings under car bonnet

A teacher got a shock after opening her car bonnet and discovering a starling nest.

Karen Saunders first found the nest two weeks ago at her home in Cunningsburgh with the chicks hatching a few days later.

The acting headteacher at Tingwall Primary School said she “learned that all active nests are protected by law and you have to apply for a licence to move them”.

“Considering starlings are in decline I didn’t have the heart to and now I can’t move the chicks!” said Ms Saunders.

“They’re getting on great,” she said. “The mam and dad are going in under the car with worms and insects in their beaks all the time – it’s fascinating to watch.” 

Ms Saunders said the fledglings are so loud now “you can hear them chirping for food from the other side of the garden”.

Starlings love nothing more than a cosy space, according to the RSPB, which is probably why they decided on the car bonnet for their nest.

Car owners have been reminded to check for starling nests in their vehicles during breeding season, especially during lockdown when vehicles are stationary, which can cause car fires.

Ms Saunders said she had “no idea when I’ll get my car back” but luckily there is another car in the household she can use if needs be.


Add Your Comment

Add Your Comment

Please note, it is the policy of The Shetland Times to publish comments and letters from named individuals only. Both forename and surname are required.

Comments are moderated. Contributors must observe normal standards of decency and tolerance for the opinions of others.

The views expressed are those of contributors and not of The Shetland Times.

The Shetland Times reserves the right to decline or remove any contribution without notice or stating reason.

Comments are limited to 200 words but please email longer articles or letters to for consideration and include a daytime telephone number and your address. If emailing information in confidence please put "Not for publication" in both the subject line and at the top of the main message.

200 words left

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


Get Latest News in Your Inbox

Join the The Shetland Times mailing list to get one daily email update at midday on what's happening in Shetland.