In the states of New Mexico, Colorado, Texas, Arizona, but also in the more northerly Nebraska flycatchers, swallows and warblers are found dead. It is unclear what causes the bugs to die, but experts say it is possible that the severe wildfires on the west coast may affect the birds’ course.
A short cold period a few days ago would also have upset the birds. Due to the sudden change in temperature, the animals would have started their journey earlier and not yet sufficiently fed.
“It’s awful,” Martha Desmond, a biology professor at the University of New Mexico, told KRQE-TV. “I have picked up more than a dozen myself near my house. Personally, I find it dramatic to see how widespread this is. With so many different species dying, you can speak of a national tragedy.”
‘Feathers and Bones’
The dead bugs that are found have been seriously weakened. “They are literally just feathers and bones,” Allison Salas, a university researcher, wrote on Twitter. “Looks like they’ve flown until they can’t anymore.”
Bird deaths in recent days are not isolated. Biologists in the United States have long been concerned about a shrinking population of various bird species. The mass mortality of the last days is being investigated.