A REMARKABLE video shows the moment a murmuration of 40,000 starlings evaporates as they drop out of the sky at the same moment.
Retired water worker Simon Waters, 61, captured the stunning scene at the RSPB Minsmere Nature Reserve, in Suffolk.
His footage shows the birds create incredibly dense shapes at one moment and seem to fill the sky the next.
But the clip is really notable for how the starlings suddenly and in unison land to roost for the night.
The stunning moment caught onlookers so off guard that they broke into “spontaneous applause”, according to Simon, from Ipswich.
The video, which has been viewed over 700,000 times, was captioned: “This is how 40,000 starlings get to bed in less than a minute.”
He said: “I had been the night before and was taken aback by the spectacle. Although I had seen murmurations before this was something special.
“When they flew over the top they reminded me of being underwater with a huge shoal of fish swimming right over the top of me. It was like a living firework display.
He continued: “I wasn’t expecting the flock to drop into the reeds so quickly and so close. The night before I was poorly prepared and had run out of storage on my mobile phone.
“I came the next day better prepared and sat waiting in a better position. Luckily everything came together exceptionally well.
“The experience is mesmerising and the crowd broke into spontaneous applause at the finale. Lots of parents had brought their children to enjoy the experience.
The RSPB, on their website, say: “We think that starlings do it for many reasons.
“Grouping together offers safety in numbers – predators such as peregrine falcons find it hard to target one bird in the middle of a hypnotising flock of thousands.
“They also gather to keep warm at night and to exchange information, such as good feeding areas.
“They gather over their roosting site, and perform their wheeling stunts before they roost for the night.”