Ricky Rodson is an experienced cryptozoologist with several published books on the subjects of zoology, cryptozoology, and mythical beasts.
Extremely Strange Mass Animal Deaths
A sad fact of the world is that hundreds of animals die every day and hardly anyone bats an eye. But when large numbers of animals die at the same time from an unknown cause it causes great alarm amongst the world's scientists. Without proper investigation of all unknown mass animal deaths, the world would be leaving itself open for a global pandemic. And while there has been plenty of strange animal deaths over the years, our list puts the spotlight on the Top 10 Extremely Strange Mass Animal Deaths.
Our list is composed of:
- Whales Washing Ashore The Indian Coast In 2016
- Kazakhstan Antelope Deaths of 2015
- Blackbird Deaths Occurring In The Southern United States in 2011
- Chilean Penguin Deaths
- Ugandan Hippo Poisoning of 2004
- Switzerland Cow Suicides of 2009
- White-Nose Syndrome
- Turkish Sheep Jump of 2005
- Exploding German Toads in 2005
- Mass Mongolian Die-Off in 2010
Whales Washing Ashore The Indian Coast In 2016
In the winter of 2016, a large number of whales began washing ashore on a 10 mile along the coast of India. Within just a few hours 80 whales had become trapped along the beaches. The government and local fishermen worked to free as many of the whales as possible. In the end, 45 whales had succumbed to their situation and died before being rescued. What makes the situation strange is that local fishermen have said the same thing happened in 1973, but at that time over 147 whales had died. It is theorized that the whales end up coming ashore due to human activity caused by the local shipping lane but no one knows for shore why this has happened multiple times in the last 50 years.
Kazakhstan Antelope Deaths of 2015
In 2015 over 200,000 saiga antelopes suddenly collapsed and died, devastating the global population by 60%. The strange event took place in Kazakhstan and is now believed to have been caused by a bacterial infection triggered by the unusually high humidity level and temperatures that were seen in the area prior to the deaths. What makes the situation even more alarming is that scientists believe that, given the current state of Global Warming, we could possibly see situations like this start to happen at a much higher rate.
What Killed the Saiga Antelope?
Blackbird Deaths Occurring In The Southern United States in 2011
Just after the new year in 2011 a couple of small towns in the southern United States were the homes of extremely strange mass animal deaths. First, the small town of Beebe, Arkansas was rained down upon by the corpses of over 5000 blackbirds. Reports indicate the several members of the community were struck by the birds as they fell from the sky. Days later the neighboring town of Labarre, Louisiana was just missed by the falling corpses of 500 red-winged blackbirds and starlings. It was later discovered that both of the strange occurrences were caused by firework displays set to celebrate the new year.
Chilean Penguin Deaths
Chile was the site of a particular strange mass animal death when three different species of animals all died within a small period of time along its shores back in March of 2009. First 1,200 dead penguins washed up onto the southern shores of the country over a couple of days. None of the penguins showed any real sign of distress causing concern for local marine biologists. Then to make things even worse millions upon millions of sardines have seemed to succumb to the same fate and also began washing onto the shores of the country by the truckload. To this day, no one knows for sure what caused the deaths of so many animals within such a short period of time.
Ugandan Hippo Poisoning of 2004
In 2004 scientists were baffled for several months when a large population of Uganda hippos began to die. A total of 194 hippos and 14 buffalos died before the cause was finally discovered. Robert Koch Institute was eventually able to identify the disease as anthrax. While anthrax is most known for being developed into a biological weapon, it does still occur naturally in many parts of the world. To make things even worse, the contaminated water source was located in a park inhabited by nearly 5000 hippos, half of the country's total population.
Hippos Infected with Anthrax
Switzerland Cow Suicides of 2009
The locals of a Swiss village named Lauterbrunnen are still forced to speculate the cause of a strange mass animal death the occurred just outside their village in 2009. Over the span of three crazy days, a total of 28 cows would approach the same spot on a rocky cliffside and jump to their deaths. What's strange about this situation, aside from all of the cows choosing the same location, is that the local police have stated on the record that the area is not the home of any predators that could cause the cows to jump and that cows of the area normally have the ability to estimate the dangers of such a jump. Unlike some of the other strange animal deaths on this post, this one still remains a mystery.
White-Nose Syndrome is a death causing condition of North American bats that was first identified in February 2006 located deep within a cavin Schoharie County, New York. Since that time, it has spread rapidly throughout North America and was identified in 33 different states and even reaching 7 Canadian provinces. White-Nose Syndrome is easily identified by the white fungal growth that forms around the muzzles and wing membranes of affected bats. Within the first six years of its known existence, White-Nose Syndrome is believed to have caused at least 5.7 million to 6.7 million bat deaths in North America.
Turkish Sheep Jump of 2005
In 2005 Fox News reported on a strange story involving the death of 450 sheep in Turkey. According to the report, as the flock of nearly 1,500 sheep were grazing in the nearby fields one reckless member of the group randomly jumped from the side of the cliff and fell to its death. When the rest of the flock saw this happen they began to jump behind it causing a chain reaction of death. In the end, all 1,500 of the sheep had jumped off the cliff. The strange part of the story is that only 450 of the sheep died. The rest of the sheep survived the fall by landing on the soft pillowy bodies of the deceased sheep that jumped before them.
Exploding German Toads in 2005
Scientists were baffled for several weeks when thousands of the toads began to explode in a small pond located in Germany. At first, theories included an unknown virus or a strange fungus in entering the pond but it later was discovered that the real cause was nothing more than an ingenious murder of crows. After learning that the only part of the toad they could eat was the liver, the crows would target that part of the animal. Once the liver was removed the toad would trigger its own natural defense system and swell up. Without the liver in place, the toads would expand to the point of exploding.
Mass Mongolian Die-Off in 2010
2010 was a rough year for the country of Mongolia with the deaths of millions of farm animals including goats, camels, horses, cows, sheep, and yaks. The event was caused by a strange weather phenom called a 'zud'. Zuds are the result of an extremely cold and snowy winter being followed by a long summer drought. When this happens, the land is unable to adequately grow enough greenery to feed many of the local species. This just goes to show that sometimes you can do everything right as a species, and mother nature will still have another plan in mind.