US scientists think that fireworks may have caused more than 3000 birds to plunge to their deaths over an Arkansas town on New Year’s Eve.
The red-winged blackbirds flew at rooftop level instead of treetop level to avoid the fireworks and ended up smacking into objects, according to Karen Rowe, of the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission.
But further tests on the birds will still be carried out to confirm the cause of death.
Thousands of the birds fell over the city of Beebe just after loud fireworks were set off.
Birds were “littering the streets, the yards, the driveways, everywhere,” said Robby King, a county wildlife officer.
“It was hard to drive down the street in some places without running over them.”
Laboratory reports have revealed that the birds died from trauma after hitting cars, trees and the ground.
Ornitologist Ms Rowe said that blackbirds have poor eyesight so they started colliding with things.
Other experts say that a thunderstorm could have disorientated the birds as tornadoes struck Arkansas on December 31.