Some 5,000 eared grebes mistook pavement for water at the Dugway Proving Ground in Utah, the Salt Lake City Tribune reports. Hundreds of the birds died after their hard landing. Because the birds cannot take flight from dry land, Utah Division of Wildlife Resources personnel collected the living birds and transported them to nearby ponds.
Other birds were treated for their injuries or euthanized, the Tribune article says. The article also notes that the night was foggy, the pavement was wet and the grebes were on their spring migration to the Great Salt Lake.
The article also notes that 17 months ago migrating eared grebes crashed in a Wal-Mart parking lot, where about 1,500 of the grebes died.
Read the Salt Lake City Tribune article here.
Check out the slide show with the article, which includes beautiful grebe photos and state wildlife staffers at work.
Read a Utah DWR newsletter on loons and grebes.
Photo Copyright Nicky Davis. Eared grebe in happier times. Photo used courtesy of the Utah Department of Wildlife Resources.