Grackles are one of the most rapidly expanding species in North America, which is amazing for a nascent birder such as myself who can’t get enough of their beady yellow eyes and no-fucks-given attitude. Know who’s had enough of grackles, though? This woman:
That’s right, North Texas: It’s grackle season once again! Hundreds of thousands of birds are currently on their way back up north, with many choosing to make a pit stop in Houston to see the sights and maybe poop on some cars. This video, taken by KHOU reporter Brett Buffington, shows thousands of grackles swarming a Kroger parking lot, trapping fearful shoppers in their cars while one brave unidentified woman makes a break for it. Grackles tend to like parking lots, particularly those of supermarkets and fast food restaurants, as food is plentiful.
The Houston Audubon Society warns that grackles are fiercely protective of their children and will defend their nests by any means necessary: dive bombing predators; chasing them into traffic; sometimes organizing into an angry mob that will destroy a perceived threat and, if the opportunity arises, steal their lunch. If they’ve decided to turn your local supermarket into an avian Melrose Place, good luck stopping them from cranking out bird babies left and right. Perhaps you should wear some sort of bird costume to the supermarket for the next few weeks to blend in. Not too sexy, though, because you know how grackles get when they’re on vacation and all hopped up on candy wrappers.