Hundreds of Birds Fall Dead From Sky in Shocking Footage Sparking Wild Conspiracy Theories

Shocking footage that shows hundreds of birds mysteriously crashing to the ground dead has sparked wild conspiracy theories.

The footage, captured by a local police department in Mexico, shows a residential street in Cuauhtémoc city suddenly blanketed in dead birds as they drop from the sky mid-flight. Some of the birds lie dead in the street, while others manage to fly away.

The birds in the footage, yellow-headed blackbirds, are migratory and travel south to Mexico and Central America for winter from Canada. When they migrate, they travel in large flocks. It is highly unusual for so many of them to fall out of the sky mid-flight.

The video, which was shared by multiple Mexican news outlets, has now gone viral. Many social media users were spooked by the footage, sharing their theories about what they thought happened to the birds online.

Some people said the birds inhaled toxic gas while flying, while others suggested they were electrocuted by a power line. One social media user even suggested that they flew into an invisible alien hovercraft. Another said that it almost appeared as though some of the birds were forced to collide to the ground by the other birds.

Ornithologist and biology professor at Allegheny College in Pennsylvania, Ronald L. Mumme told Newsweek that the footage was "bizarre." However, he said these events have been known to happen "from time to time" for known and unknown reasons.

"Based on the birds' behavior, my suspicion is that a falcon or other bird-eating raptor attacked the flock in flight, and during evasive maneuvers the flock members dove, became disoriented, and many crashed to the ground and injured themselves," he said. "I don't think any birds were having problems until they collided with the ground or buildings. It looks like most of the birds were able to fly away, but a significant number could not."

Mumme said that the theory that the birds inhaled toxic gas "seems like a really long reach."

"[That] wouldn't explain why this really tight flock crashed before most flew away," he said.

The birds were flying in what is known as a murmuration, which refers to a group of birds flying together. Murmurations can make spectacular shapes in the sky because all birds move in sync with each other; when one bird changes its direction or speed, each of the other birds in the flock responds to the change simultaneously.

In March 2020, a similar incident occurred in Anglesey, Wales, when dozens of starlings were found dead on a lane. Experts said that they had gone into a dive murmuration together and hit the tarmac.

Mumme's theory suggests that if one bird moved to dodge a falcon, or other predatory bird, then the others would have gone with them, causing them to move off-course and collide with the ground.

Yellow headed black bird
A photo shows a yellow headed black bird. The birds migrate in large flocks. Brian Reinke/Getty Images