Wondrous Murmurations of the Common Starling

In the tradition of Andrew Sullivan’s Dish, we start the week–before it even gets a bit hectic–with a Mental Health break. Above, watch The Art of Flying, Jan van Ijken’s short film that captures the mysterious flights–or murmurations–of the Common Starling. A blurb accompanying the film adds a bit more context:

It is still unknown how the thousands of birds are able to fly in such dense swarms without colliding. Every night the starlings gather at dusk to perform their stunning air show. Because of the relatively warm winter of 2014/2015, the starlings stayed in the Netherlands instead of migrating southwards. This gave filmmaker Jan van IJken the opportunity to film one of the most spectacular and amazing natural phenomena on earth.

Also, over at janvanijken.com, you’ll find a longer seven-minute version of this film, featuring “wonderful close-ups and a spectacular final scene.” The €2,99 fee for watching that full-length film goes toward supporting van Ijken’s work as an independent filmmaker.


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