The whirr of many wings


Dusk is coming later now. Walking home with the late afternoon light starting to fade, there’s a noise in the air, a fluttering whirring. It’s getting nearer.

We stop and look up. Overhead a large group of starlings fills the sky above our small cul de sac. We watch them pass and swoop on towards reedbeds beside a nearby mere.

We can almost hear them: “Hurry, hurry, let’s join the others” because it’s likely that this group is en route to join with more starlings who will veer and plunge and dip in ever-changing shapes as they murmurate, then settle down to roost when it’s dark.

The photograph of a starling murmuration was taken at Martin Mere WWT reserve in November. It lasted for approximately 35 minutes.

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