Birds of a feather continue to die together.
Shortly before midnight on January 4, residents in the Swedish town of Falköping found between 50 and 100 jackdaw carcasses strewn across their lawns and roads. County veterinarian Robert ter Horst believes the birds were scared to death. “We have received information from local residents last night,” he told Swedish news agency TT. “Our main theory is that the birds were scared away because of fireworks and landed on the road, but couldn’t fly away from the stress and were hit by a car.”
Anders Wirdheim of the Swedish Ornithological Society told TT that the flock of birds was particularly vulnerable this year, and less likely to respond competently to a fright. “This winter has been unusually tough and jackdaws may be in poor condition. That makes it easier for them to fly into different objects. There is very little food in the wild compared with previous years and I see dying birds every day.”
The mysterious death of the jackdaws, dark-plumaged members of the crow family, follows similarly creepy incidents in Arkansas, where up to 5,000 birds dropped dead on New Year’s Eve, Louisiana, where more than 500 dead bird plummeted to the ground on January 3, and Kentucky, where a woman found dozens of bird corpses in her backyard.
Experts insist that no link exists between the four cases, and no one has connected any of them with the death of up to 100,000 fish in Arkansas last week. (via The Local)