Starling murmuration – On Brighton and Hove seafront, from November to March around sunset, thousands of starlings flock in a mass aerial display called a murmuration.
They swoop and whirl in the sky over both of the Brighton and Hove piers where they will roost for the night after their amazing, acrobatic performance. Under the piers, they are protected from harsh weather and from predators.
The displays may look impressive but the numbers are drastically reduced compared to previous years. The starling population in the UK has fallen by over 80% in recent years, meaning they are now on the critical list of UK birds most at risk. Use of chemicals and loss of pasture on farms, loss of nesting sites and lack of food are thought to be some of the causes. The West Pier itself has reduced in size as more and more of the structure has fallen into the sea, considerably decreasing the amount of roosting space for the birds.