Bird formations in the sky are known to be extremely magnificent sights, and few can compete with the ones that starlings weave. The murmurations – as it's called – of these birds are examples of perfect fluidity and coordination.
The video above was posted on Instagram by Herbert Schroer, who described it as his “favourite capture of 2015”. It shows a murmuration of starlings being chased by a falcon. He claims to have captured it at his place of residence, Utrecht, The Netherlands, where these movements have often been sighted. This is his second attempt at capturing the birds, with the speed slightly increased in this video.
Ironically, this beautiful movement of starlings is almost always a defence mechanism by the flock to distance themselves from predators. These murmurations continue to fascinate researchers who study the complex physical phenomena behind them. They find that the birds use something called "scale-free correlation".
Any change in direction or speed by one bird brings forth a response from the rest of the flock almost simultaneously. “In essence, information moves across the flock very quickly and with nearly no degradation,” reported an article in the Cornell Lab of Ornithology.
So much beauty, just to save your life!