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Police confirm suspected cause of Anglesey starling deaths
The starlings were found near Llyn Llywenan, Bodedern, on Tuesday 10 December 2019.

Bodies of hundreds of birds were discovered in December 2019

North Wales police have confirmed what most likely caused a group of nearly 300 starlings to mysteriously die in Anglesey in December.

The birds were discovered scattered on an unclassified road and in nearby hedgerows, but none were found in the surrounding fields. Some were still alive when the group was found but were visibly weak and unable to fly, dying shortly after.

The story sparked global interest, with people speculating on a number of causes, from bird flu, to 5G signals, to a sonic boom. Leading both the RAF and Vodaphone to release statements rejecting their involvement.

In a series of tweets published on the North Wales Police Rural Crime Team’s twitter, the police stated that they are still awaiting toxicology reports, however “It’s highly likely the murmuration took avoiding action whilst airborne, possibly [from] a bird of prey, with the rear of the group not pulling up in time and striking the ground.”

According to the police, initial tests carried out by the Animal Plant and Health Agency (APHA) confirming trauma and internal bleeding as the cause of death, support the theory that the birds died from impact with the road.

35 starlings were taken for examination, one of which was found to have a ring on its left leg having been ringed in Lithuania in 2015, making it four years old and 1,662 km away from Anglesey from the point of ringing.

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Rare chimp birth announced at Edinburgh Zoo

News Story 1
 The Royal Zoological Society of Scotland (RZSS) welcomed the birth of a critically endangered western chimpanzee on Monday 3 February at Edinburgh Zoo's Budongo Trail.

The baby girl will be named in the coming days through a public vote, and staff will carry out a paternity test during its first health check to determine the father.

Mother Heleen's first infant, Velu, was born in 2014, making this new baby only the second chimpanzee born in Scotland for more than 20 years.

Budongo Trail team leader Donald Gow said: "While we celebrate every birth, this one is particularly special because our new arrival is a critically endangered Western chimpanzee, a rare subspecies of chimpanzee."

Image (c) RZSS/Donald Gow. 

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BEVA offering free membership to vet students

The British Equine Veterinary Association (BEVA) is offering free membership to veterinary students. As part of a new initiative with the aim of encouraging more veterinary professionals into equine practice.

According to BEVA, less than one in ten veterinary students choose to work in equine practice. The association hopes that this initiative will provide insight into the field and the benefits of a career in equine medicine.

Benefits of membership include:
▪ access to a network of nearly 3,000 members
▪ special student rates to attend BEVA Congress
▪ online access to BEVA's Equine Veterinary Education (EVE) journal
▪ free access to the association's online learning platform
▪ free access to BEVA's practical veterinary apps
▪ exclusive discounts on a range of things from cinema tickets to grocery shopping.

BEVA will be releasing a series of short videos over the next few months from BEVA Council members, explaining what inspired them to work in equine practice.

Image (c) BEVA.