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Latest Mass Bird Death a Government Conspiracy (Sort of)

Some birds form tight, V-shaped patterns, such as these migrating Canada Geese. (Image credit: Bronwyn8 | Dreamstime)

Suspicious types who would like to blame recent mass animal deaths on the feds, you have your chance: More than 300 starlings found dead in Yankton, S.D. were poisoned by the United States Department of Agriculture.

Starlings, an invasive species now widespread in North America, began showing up dead in Yankton on Monday, MSNBC reported. Residents immediately wondered if the deaths were related to other widely-reported mass animal deaths, including birds falling from the sky in Arkansas and crabs washing up on beaches in England.

"You know, the first thing that comes to mind is all the reports we've seen about the birds and the fish," resident Alison Brown told Rapid City, S.D. NBC station KNBN.

In this case, though, the deaths were deliberate. The large flock of starlings was eating feed and leaving droppings all over a cattle feedlot in northern Nebraska, USDA wildlife biologist Ricky Woods told MSNBC. As a "last resort," he said, the USDA put out poison for the birds.

"In this situation it's what we had to do," Woods said.

Read the full story at MSNBC.

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