Image: Martha Desmond/New Mexico State University
First it was the bees, and now millions of migratory birds across the Southwest are dropping dead from the skies. A large portion of the mysterious deaths are occurring in the State of New Mexico near the US Army White Sands Missile Range. Scientist at New Mexico State University are investigating if there is a possible correlation between the location - known for being a military testing area having higher-than-background radiation levels - and the sudden demise of the bird population in the region.
Another possible cause that is being considered, is whether the West Coast fires are somehow connected to this tragic extinction. Some biologists are speculating that the fires, combined the unusual cold spell the region is experiencing, could be altering the migratory patterns of the birds, which migrate to the region every year in search of food and shelter.
The Western wildfires could be one factor, a New Mexico biologist says, but something else is contributing to the deaths and they don't know what it is.