The murmuration of starlings is one of the natural world’s most spectacular sights.
It involves hundreds of thousands of birds all flying closely together. It can be a mesmerising and hypnotic sight as the birds can seem to move as if they were one large organism.
They seem to be flying very fast and in random directions but they seldom crash into one another and always mange to find enough space to keep moving at a quick pace despite the density of the population of birds they are flying amongst.
It is something that has fascinated people for centuries and to this day experts don’t know why the birds would behave in such a way and what they achieve with the murmurations.
Some theories include that they use the murmuration as a way to confuse predators, or as a way to keep warm. It has also been suggested that the birds are indicating that they have found a safe place to roost.
It is a phenomenon that has been captured on video in Ireland several times. Some of the videos have been posted online and have been seen millions of times.
We have trawled through YouTube to find some of the best videos.
Take a look at some spectacular murmurations below.
Murmuration (Official Video) by Sophie Windsor Clive & Liberty Smith recorded on the River Shannon.
Starling Murmuration in lackagh, Co Galway, Ireland
Murmuration of Starlings, Roscommon Ireland
Murmuration of starlings Kilkenny, Ireland 5th Jan
Murmuration of Starlings in Lackagh, Galway, Ireland. 19-01-2014 by Galwaygirl36
And finally, one from further afield: Wysinfo Docuwebs: Dance of the Starlings – Murmuration at Sunset recorded over the western Negev, Israel.