19/10/2019
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Mystery surrounds mass Pied Wagtail die-off

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Shocking video footage has emerged of Pied Wagtails seemingly plunging to their deaths outside a hospital in the West Midlands.

Joshua Brown had been visiting his grandmother at the University Hospital Coventry and Warwickshire when he noticed a bird falling from a tree. He then started filming and captured several others seemingly plunging to the ground around him.

 

In the footage, several of the birds can be seen lying motionless on the cobbles as Joshua says: "This is weird." He tells the camera: "They are literally falling out the tree as I'm speaking. They're everywhere. Falling out the tree dead, one after the after."

Joshua told CoventryLive: "I didn’t see any hit windows, but I've spoken to the RSPB who have taken a look at the video, and they think that most of the birds have twisted necks, like they've hit something.

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"I spoke to a security guard who thought that some birds had got into the building and the birds falling out of the sky had something to do with pest control. There’s also a conspiracy theory about 5G causing it, but I don’t know enough about it to say." 

The RSPCA has since launched an investigation to try and determine the cause behind the deaths. A spokesperson said: "We are aware of this distressing video and are now investigating the possible cause. Anyone with information about this should call the RSPCA appeals line on 0300 123 8018 and leave a message for AWO Ben Jones."

A spokesman for University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire (UHCW) NHS Trust thanked members of the public for bringing the footage to their attention. He said: "Our service contractor has sought independent advice and is also meeting with the RSPCA to consider potential causes. We take great pride in the natural environment at the hospital and take our responsibility to protect and support wildlife extremely seriously."