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“Aflockalypse” Examined

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SOUTHWEST MIAMI-DADE (CBS4) – When the birds began falling from the sky in Arkansas on New Year’s Eve, Hazmat crews came out in full force.

“Walking around in masks, and I’m wondering, do we need the same thing? Because what makes that happen for them to just drop out of the sky like that?” asked one Arkansas woman.

“I’d like to know. Kinda spooky,” said another person.

“I’m just wondering what’s next,” asked another.

Call it the “Aflockalypse.” Thousands of birds dropped dead — first in Arkansas, then around the world. But Zoo Miami’s Ron Magill says you should hold off on your end-of-days plan.

“The one thing that comforts me is that it’s all one species, it’s all black birds in one area, it’s all starlings in another area,” said Magill.

Were the birds poisoned?

“If it was something like a toxic substance or something like that, it wouldn’t be one species of bird. All the birds in the area would be falling out of the sky,” he said.

So what sent certain species of birds over the edge?

“If some type of thing happened, like a huge fireworks display or some type of weather event, it could send the whole flock into hysteria, and they could fall out of the sky,” said Magill.

Or, Magill says, maybe they sense environmental problems.

“Animals tell us things that we don’t necessarily sense right away,” he said.

But Magill’s best guess is that this is nothing new. He thinks we just hear about it more now.

“My suspicion is this has probably been happening for many, many years,” said Magill.

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