Migratory Starlings Put on Spectacular Performance Over Israeli Desert

The birds, which have come from Russia and eastern Europe, form dark, shifting shapes known as murmurations as they swirl through the skies of southern Israel

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A murmuration of migrating starlings fly in a group above a waste facility near the city of Rahat, southern Israel January 1, 2019. Picture taken January 1, 2019.
A murmuration of migrating starlings fly in a group above a waste facility near the city of Rahat, southern Israel January 1, 2019. Credit: \ RONEN ZVULUN/ REUTERS
Reuters
Reuters

Starlings wintering in Israel have been putting on a spectacular aerial dance display over the Negev desert every morning for the past two weeks.

The birds, which have come from Russia and eastern Europe, form dark, shifting shapes known as murmurations as they swirl through the skies of southern Israel.

Migratory birds swirl in Israel’s skies

By grouping together, Tel Aviv University ornithologist Yossi Leshem told Reuters, the starlings find safety in numbers and their swirling movements confuse predators. (Writing by Elana Ringler Editing by Gareth Jones)

A digger is silhouetted as a murmuration of migrating starlings and black kites fly above it near the city of Rahat, southern Israel January 1, 2019. Credit: \ RONEN ZVULUN/ REUTERS
A murmuration of migrating starlings fly in a group next to black kites near the city of Rahat, southern Israel December 30, 2018.Credit: \ RONEN ZVULUN/ REUTERS
A murmuration of migrating starlings fly in a group next to black kites near the city of Rahat, southern Israel December 31, 2018.Credit: \ RONEN ZVULUN/ REUTERS
A murmuration of migrating starlings fly in a group above a waste facility near the city of Rahat, southern Israel December 31, 2018.Credit: \ RONEN ZVULUN/ REUTERS
A cow stands nearby as a murmuration of migrating starlings fly in a group near the city of Rahat, southern Israel December 31, 2018. Credit: \ RONEN ZVULUN/ REUTERS
A murmuration of migrating starlings fly in a group near the city of Rahat, southern Israel January 1, 2019. Credit: \ RONEN ZVULUN/ REUTERS
A murmuration of migrating starlings fly above trees near the city of Rahat, southern Israel December 25, 2018. Credit: \ RONEN ZVULUN/ REUTERS
A murmuration of migrating starlings fly in a group above a waste facility near the city of Rahat, southern Israel December 31, 2018. Credit: \ RONEN ZVULUN/ REUTERS
A murmuration of migrating starlings fly in a group near the city of Rahat, southern Israel January 1, 2019.Credit: \ RONEN ZVULUN/ REUTERS

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