You Have To See This Amazing Bird Air Ballet

If you have no idea what a murmuration is, you’re not alone. After watching this mesmerizing natural phenomenon, caught on film by two women in Ireland, we immediately had to find out.

As it turns out, a murmuration is just a large gathering of starlings, a medium-sized black bird. But what causes them to pulsate and majestically dance across the sky isn't what you might think. 

According to the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, murmurations often form due to a falcon near the flock. And, all of the aerial ducking and weaving is really just a defense mechanism to get them the hell away from predators. Who knew something so tragic could be so beautiful?

But how do the starlings coordinate their movements so seamlessly, you ask? A study published in the journal PLOS Computational Biology found that the birds coordinate with their seven closest flying neighbors. The researchers do admit, however, “How starlings achieve such a strong correlation remains a mystery to us.”

What isn't a mystery? How freaking awesome this video is. Things get absolutely bananas about 52 seconds in. Yay, nature!