Tipsy birds flying into windows, cars in northern Minnesota

The birds were consuming berries that had fermented earlier than usual due to an early frost. File pic

Image Police urged concerned residents not to alert officers about the birds. File pic

Minnesota authorities released a statement on Tuesday after multiple Gilbert residents called to complain about seemingly inebriated birds that have been menacing the city.

The birds are ingesting berries that have fermented earlier than usual, and the sugar in the fruits can turn into alcohol as they lose moisture. A surprise frost led local berries to ferment earlier than is typical, and there's a corresponding increase in drunk birds in Gilbert. In recent days, they have been flying perilously close to windows and cars, and generally seem to be discombobulated.

He said robins, cedar waxwings and thrushes are the bird species most likely to tie one on since they eat more berries than other species. Berry fermentation is the answer.

Numerous species who have overindulged on the boozy berries traditionally fly south for winter, leading them to gorge on the fruit in a bid to build up fat for the journey.

The birds are said to be 'confused'. File pic
Image The birds are said to be 'confused'. File pic

"Generally, younger birds' livers can not handle the toxins as effectively as more mature birds", the police department writes. "They have actually fallen out of trees on occasion".

You hear stories of humans having the cops called on them due to intoxication, but birds?

The "public notice" even goes the extra mile by adding a humorous list of sightings that the public should be on the lookout for, including "Woodstock pushing Snoopy off the doghouse for no apparent reason", and "Any birds after midnight with Taco Bell items". The officials also expect the birds to sober up soon enough. And it's pretty common, reports NPR, which dug up some other instances of boozey birds. They reassure folks they'll "sober up within a short period of time".

Because as anyone recovering from a gnarly bender regrettably knows, time is often the only true remedy for a bad hangover-whether tequila or fermented berry-induced.

Latest News