In my last post I mentioned going to see the Starlings morning murmuration on the Somerset Levels and I thought I would include a bit of the film footage I shot whilst I was there. Unfortunately it was only filmed on a small digital camera so it certainly isn't professional but I think you will get a feel of the experience.
I have spent many hours researching the murmurations since I took the film and I can honestly say that, whilst some of the starling behaviour seems to be explained, there is still no real understanding of how the starlings manage to navigate their way without crashing into each other. However, in many of the articles I have found reference to an ornithologist called Edmund Selous I have included a link here so you can find out more about him. Selous wrote a book called 'Thought Transference (or what) in Birds" in which he claimed the starlings used a type of telepathy to communicate during the murmuration. I think it helps to remember that Selous was writing in 1931 so his ideas lack real science but he also wrote a book called 'Bird life glimpses'. This book contains extremely vivid descriptions of the birds he was watching which are a joy to read and conjure the most incredible mental images.
"And still they circle; now dense like a polished roof, now disseminated like the meshes of some vast all-heaven-sweeping net, now darkening, now flashing out a million rays of light, wheeling, rending, tearing, darting, crossing, and piercing one another - a madness in the sky".
Edmund Selous (1931)
Printing, Drawing, Animation,Teaching and being nosey.
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