Friday, 7 January 2011

What Cataclysm Killed The Birds In Arkansas (And Louisiana, And Sweden)?

When 5,000 dead red-winged blackbirds dropped from the sky in Arkansas, USA, on New Year's Eve, ornithologists were puzzled and witnesses were understandably unsettled. Then another 500 birds were found littering a stretch of asphalt in Louisiana three days later. More 'bird death events' emerged in Kentucky, Texas, and Sweden. As well as 85,000 drum fish found dead in the Arkansas River.

Events like mass bird mortalities are strange, though not impossible. Over the past three decades the U.S. Geological Survey has only recorded 16 mass bird death events (involving more than 1,000 birds). But it does happen – probably far more than we know.

2 comment(s):

Anonymous said...

These birds sleep in groups, sometimes with thousands. Probably they were frightened and disoriented by the fireworks.


Gareth said...

So anonymous, you can explain all those mass bird deaths by saying "it was the fireworks"? Even the ones where there were no fireworks around? Clever old you.