The Bird Flu in Iowa: A Murder of Crows

The Avian Flu outbreak in Iowa has created problems for many people – including my magician buddy, Michael Oz, whose doves have been banned from performing in his act at the Iowa State Fair Talent Show this summer (link http://whotv.com/2015/08/04/avian-flu-keeping-iowa-magician-from-bringing-dove-act-to-state-fair/ ).  That sucks for Oz, but it’s understandable.

THIS is really crazy, though.  The Iowa Department of Natural Resources is reporting the recent discovery of over 1,200 dead CROWS in northwest Iowa, and there was obvious concern that they may have died from the Avian Flu.

image

A bird pathologist examined the remains of each crow, and, to everyone’s relief, confirmed that the problem was definitely NOT Avian Flu.  The cause of death appeared to be vehicular impacts.

image

During the detailed analysis, it was noted that varying colors of paints appeared on the birds’ beaks and claws.

image

By analyzing these paint residues, it was determined that approximately 99% of the crows had been killed by impact with trucks, while only about 1% had been killed by an impact with a car.

image

An Ornithological Behaviorist was hired to determine if there was a cause for the disproportionate percentage of truck kills versus car kills.

image

He very quickly concluded the reason:  When crows eat road kill, they always have a “look-out” crow in a nearby tree to warn of impending danger.

image

They discovered that, while all of the look-out crows could easily shout “Caaa,” not a single one could shout “Truck.”

image

🙂

Advertisements

Help me name my new dove

BIRD Nathan Allen The Maniac of Magic Comedian Magician Entertainer Entertainment Des Moines IowaAfter I had to fire the other dove for his bad attitude (details here), I’ve moved on…

I’ve been chatting with THIS little guy, and we’re working on a pretty decent act for the show. He’s going to (A) magically appear, and then (B) read someone’s mind.

Might put him in the show as early as this weekend.

To protect his privacy, though, he says he wants a “stage name” – Any suggestions, folks?