50 to 100 birds have been found dead on a street in Sweden, officials said Wednesday.
The mass kill comes just days after 4,000 to 5,000 red-winged blackbirds dropped dead in Beebe, Ark. – most likely due to confusion caused by New Year’s Eve fireworks – and power lines likely killed about 450 more birds along a Louisiana highway near Baton Rouge.
Veterinarian Robert ter Horst told The Associated Press that fireworks set off on Tuesday were a possible cause for the dead jackdaws, which were discovered in the city of Falkoping Wednesday.
Shock from the fireworks, cold weather conditions and difficulties finding food could have caused the birds to die from stress or get run over by vehicles in their confusion, ter Horst said.
Doomsayers are shaken up about these Hitchcockian events, but scientists point out that these sorts of bird deaths aren’t all that uncommon. According to the U.S. Geological Service’s website, about 90 mass deaths of birds and other wildlife occurred between June and Dec. 12. There were five incidents of mass kills that affected at least 1,000 birds, msnbc.com reports.
Swedish officials are testing five of the dead jackdaws, AP said.