Claim: Birds of Prey Deliberately Setting Wildfires

Interesting and then some…

Watts Up With That?

Black Kite (Milvus migrans) Black Kite (Milvus migrans) – one of the species accused of setting fires. By Mayukhghose (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Guest essay by Eric Worrall

So much for fire control – JoNova reports that raptors have been photographed congregating on the edge of large Australian bushfires, picking up burning sticks, and deliberately setting new spot fires in advance of the main blaze to flush out small mammals and other prey. This discovery potentially has profound implications for fire management in places like California.

Burn, Baby, Burn: Australian Birds Steal Fire to Smoke Out Prey

By Mindy Weisberger, Senior Writer | January 9, 2018 11:23am ET

Grassland fires that are deadly and devastating events for many kinds of wildlife are a boon to certain types of birds known as fire foragers. These opportunists prey on animals fleeing from a blaze, or scavenge the remains of creatures…

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