What would happen if 200,000 African crazy sparrows simultaneously attacked elephants?

In 2017, an incident of “crazy sparrows attacking elephants” occurred in Kenya, Africa. Photographer Antero Topp promptly captured images of elephants running away in fear before the appearance of thousands of crazy birds at the Satao Camp waterhole in East Tsavo National Park, Kenya, East Africa.

More than 200,000 wild sparrows gathered into a huge flock and attacked 3 elephants. They not only peck at the elephant’s ears and trunk, but also frantically attack the elephant’s eyes. Each incision may not seem strong, but the continuous and dense attack of 200,000 sparrows made the elephants feel angry and had to run away because there was no way to deal with the crazy birds.

Điều gì sẽ xảy ra nếu 200.000 con chim sẻ điên châu Phi đồng loạt tấn công voi? - Ảnh 1.
Photographer Antero Topp promptly captured images of elephants running away in fear before the appearance of thousands of crazy birds at the Satao Camp waterhole in East Tsavo National Park, Kenya, East Africa.

According to the Telegraph , photographer Antero Topp said flocks of thousands of red-billed sparrows the size of a giant cloud were landing on large trees near water holes.

“Suddenly, I heard a crack, crack…, and it turned out a tree branch had broken under the weight of the birds, while each bird only weighed about 10 grams. You will hear an unbelievable noisy sound. when all the birds flew up at the same time,” Topp said.

“I was surprised to see the elephants had to retreat 50 meters away, some even ran away. Perhaps they were afraid of the huge size and loud noises in the air of the birds,” Topp said. on the Telegraph .

African crazy sparrow

In fact, the species of sparrow that attacks elephants is called the red-billed sparrow (Red-billed Quelea). They are the most numerous bird species on our planet. They are distributed mainly in Africa, with a population of more than 10 billion.

This bird is quite modest in size, with a body length of only 10-13 cm and weighing less than 20 grams – this size is smaller than the sparrows we often see in Vietnam.

Điều gì sẽ xảy ra nếu 200.000 con chim sẻ điên châu Phi đồng loạt tấn công voi? - Ảnh 2.
Red-billed sparrows are quite beautiful-looking birds, especially male birds. When the breeding season comes, they will put on a new plumage to attract the attention of female birds. Despite its modest size, in fact, red-billed sparrows have a quite aggressive personality and like to use herd tactics, so their fighting power is very great.

The large number of this bird species comes from the fact that they have an extremely strong reproductive ability. Normally, their mating season will take place twice a year and each time they will lay about 5 eggs. What’s even more surprising is that their eggs can hatch in a short time – after only about 10 warm days, the chicks will start chipping away at the eggshell to get out.

It is worth mentioning that this bird is also called “feathered grasshopper” by local African people, because they are an omnivore, they eat from insects to plants, often damaging agriculture and forestry. locality, especially when they gather together in a huge flock – everything that happens will be similar to a plague of locusts

Điều gì sẽ xảy ra nếu 200.000 con chim sẻ điên châu Phi đồng loạt tấn công voi? - Ảnh 3.
The red-billed sparrow, scientific name Quelea quelea, is the bird species with the largest population in the world, with about 1.5 billion breeding pairs, with an estimated 10 billion individuals living in the area. Sub-Saharan Africa.

So why do red-billed sparrows attack elephants?

African grassland elephants are the largest creatures that exist on land. It can be said that they are one of the animals that have no natural enemies outside of nature, even hyenas or lions do not dare to attack them at will. fight with elephants. So why are elephants attacked by red-billed sparrows? The answer could be one of the following reasons:

Điều gì sẽ xảy ra nếu 200.000 con chim sẻ điên châu Phi đồng loạt tấn công voi? - Ảnh 4.
The red-billed sparrow is the most numerous wild bird in the world. When concentrated in large flocks, they can cause damage to crops, similar to the damage caused by locust swarms.

1. African elephants encroach on territory

In fact, red-billed sparrows attack elephants not for the purpose of turning them into prey.

As we know, any animal in nature has its own territory, and the red-billed sparrow is no exception. Because their main food is insects and seeds, their territory includes a large amount of grasslands and trees. Furthermore, because their numbers are so large, this territory will also be very large. .

As a result, they often come into conflict with African elephants who destroy grasslands and trees in search of food, which has seriously damaged the welfare of the red-billed sparrow.

Điều gì sẽ xảy ra nếu 200.000 con chim sẻ điên châu Phi đồng loạt tấn công voi? - Ảnh 5.
This bird mainly feeds on the seeds of annual grasses, but also causes widespread damage to cereal crops. Therefore, it is sometimes called the “feathered locust of Africa”.

2. African elephants robbed them of their water source

Animals in nature conflict with each other mainly due to competition for resources to survive, and water is considered the most important resource. Furthermore, the climate in Africa is very dry, especially in the dry season, water resources will become extremely scarce, so many animal species will compete and even kill each other for water resources, including animals. both red-billed sparrows and African savannah elephants.

African elephants are animals that live in herds and each animal can drink up to 90 liters of water a day. Not only do they drink up all the red-billed sparrows’ water supply, but they even prevent the birds from drinking. Therefore, to survive, red-billed sparrows have no choice but to gather in large flocks and attack elephants to make them run away. Only then can the red-billed sparrow maintain its water source and continue to live during the dry season months.

In fact, not only elephants but also hyacinths and egrets are attacked by red-billed sparrows for this reason.

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