Yesterday afternoon, minutes before dusk and as I was finishing off in the garden, the bird chatter and whistling I’d been listening to suddenly notched up a few decibels – hundreds of starlings had landed in trees on the farm land opposite us in Wales, it was unbelievably loud! Suddenly silence fell; just as the whole flock took off en masse from their perching positions in the trees, it looked to me like the start of a murmuration:
Up to 100,000 birds can make up a murmuration, which according to the RSPB, starlings fly in just before dusk, usually from November onwards but at times as early as September. Apparently, these birds gather at their roosting sites to communicate and then fly in such large numbers for protection from predatory birds and to keep warm. It’s an amazing sight as they swirl and twist in unison!
A lone crow joined the spectacular display as the starlings lifted up and away from the trees.
This was a wonderful experience, although I couldn’t capture it fast enough to get the full impact of the swirling motion as the birds flocked around to the other side of the village. During my research on murmurations this afternoon, I came across the Starlings in the UK website which includes a map with the whereabouts of starling roosts – it’s well worth a visit…….