Five thousand blackbirds fall from the sky in Louisiana prompting End Times and government conspiracy theories – but it turns out to have been blunt force trauam. That’s the determination of the National Wildlife Health Center in Madison. “These sort of things have happened,” says DNR Conservation Warden Adam Hanna. An earlier hypothesis is the birds were startled by fireworks and started flying into each other, buildings and trees. Hanna recalls a documented case of some Cedar Waxwings who consumed fermented berries and became, for lack of a better term, hammered. “All these birds basically got drunk and flew into the sides of dorm buildings at Purdue University.” And while it didn’t get as much publicity, there were 4,000 corpses of waterfowl found floating in the Mississippi River near La Crosse in November. Hannah notes birds have very small brains. Plus, their small systems just can’t handle pollutants very well, which makes them, frogs and fish nature’s alarm system for pollution.
Paul Knoff, WCCN