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Starly is an avian Pokémon with primarily grayish-brown plumage. There is a white marking on its face, resembling a mask, and a white spot on its chest. The top portion of the mask marking is smaller on the female. The rest of its head and the lower half of its wings are black. Starly has a long, orange beak with a black tip and oval, black eyes with white pupils. A small tuft of feathers curls over the back and its head, and a small, pointed ruff surrounds its neck. It has two black tail feathers with a white feather between them. Its feet are orange with three toes in the front and one in the back. It preys on small bug Pokémon. In the anime, it has also been seen consuming the acorn-like Berries grown on the bushes of Grotle.
Although capable of flapping its wings powerfully, Starly is weak and inconspicuous when alone. It forms large flocks to protect itself. However, individuals will begin to bicker if the group becomes too large. This Pokémon’s cry is harsh, and its singing can become annoying. Starly congregates in mountains and fields, where it hunts for bug Pokémon.