Authorities were shocked to find more than 4,000 birds scattered across a local Utah Wal-Mart parking lot on Monday night. According to CBS affiliate KUTV in Salt Lake City, Utah, witnesses claimed thousands of the creatures had crash-landed in the parking area.
the pavement were dead. Fortunately, Utah Department of Wildlife Resource
officials and volunteers were able to rescue up to 3,000 of the large flock.
According to The Spectrum, officials think the birds were migrating to Mexico
and decided to take a rest in the Wal-Mart parking lot, which they mistook for a
large body of water since the Eared Grebes can only take off from water
surfaces. Officials suspect the birds didn't compensate for landing on the hard
They added to KUTV that a storm in the area probably lead to the birds'
confusion. "The storm clouds over the top of the city lights made it look like a
nice, flat body of water. All the conditions were right," Teresa Griffin, of the
state's wildlife department, told The Spectrum. "So the birds landed to rest,
but ended up slamming into the pavement."