EXPERTS fear the emergence of a new “bird flu” after thousands of birds are mysteriously found dead after falling from the sky.
Disturbing footage shows rows of decaying seabirds along the Arabat Spit on the Azov Sea in Crimea.
At least 7,000 black-necked grebes, turtledoves and gulls were found dead on the beach.
“We have recorded the death of birds in large numbers, several thousand of them,” said scholar Grigory Prokopov of the Federal University of Crimea, an environmentalist.
Poignant video shows a disoriented bird circling around due to damage to its nervous system.
Scientists believe a new viral infection could be the cause of massive bird deaths.
“Most likely, it is not poisoning,” Mr. Prokopov said.
“The behavior of a bird that I managed to observe indicated that it was clearly sick and dead.
“This is very similar to damage to the central nervous system. Most likely, it is some kind of virus.
“But the final conclusion has to be drawn by the vets.”
Although an infectious disease is the most likely cause, “both the poisoning and the ecological situation” could be a factor.
Residents also suggested the deaths could be linked to high levels of pollution in the region after reports indicated high levels of mercury in the region.
Specialists from the Federal Animal Health Center are currently working on site and analysis of the dead birds will be carried out.
He added: “An excess of mercury has been recorded in this area. “
Authorities in Crimea have yet to comment on the suspicion of bird flu on the southern flank of Europe.
The birds were found dead on the disputed border of the peninsula annexed by Russia to mainland Ukraine.
It comes after hundreds of crows died after diving to land in front of shocked villagers in Russia.
According to local residents, the village “was littered with bodies of black birds” in Ust-Tarka, in the Novosibirsk region.
It’s the kind of massive bird death that was previously dubbed “aflockalypse” when flocks suddenly fall from the sky, the Conversation reported.
Ten years ago, it was learned that thousands of birds had fallen from the sky in Arkansas and 100,000 drumfish were found dead in a nearby river.
Soon the media began to report more incidents all over the world: turtledoves dying en masse in Italy, jackdaws in Sweden, dead crabs on the Kent coast, millions of spot fish in Chesapeake Bay in Maryland and a large number of dead sardines near Los Angeles.
Bloggers have offered a wide range of responses to these disturbing events, with some suggesting the scenes “were like the apocalypse.”
Secret government experiments, magnetic pole shifting or strange diseases caused by toxic effects of human activities have been listed as possible causes, the report added.
In Ust-Tarksk, dead crows may have been poisoned, according to reports.
Ornithologist Alexei Yanovsky told NSK that if they had been poisoned, they could have ingested pesticides.
He said: “For example, in landfills where rats or vole mice have been poisoned.
“Or [the birds] could be poisoned by moldy grain waste. It is also possible that the towers were poisoned on purpose. “
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