Here in Abilene we have huge and annoying flocks of crackles, in Israel they are seeing flocks of starlings. These birds have been showing up lately in near the town of Netivot in southern Israel. The birds have been absent from the region for almost 20 years.

These birds are seen in the huge clusters for 2 main reasons. The first reason is hunting food. When one bird finds food the rest follow in synchronicity. It is also a defense mechanism. Professor Yossi Leshem explains that if one bird alone is flying it is a target for birds of prey like hawks but as a group they are harder to catch.

The birds used to migrate from Russia and Eastern Europe to Israel by the millions in the early 90's however, for unknown reasons the birds disappeared for almost 20 years. They are suddenly back and making bird watchers and photographers very happy.

Their movements have such incredible smooth flow that they look they have practiced for hours, and maybe they have. The Olympic Synchronized Swim Team has nothing on these birds!