BIRDS of a feather truly do stick together . . .

Thousands of starlings are creating stunning scenes as they delightfully dance above the shores of the Solway Firth near Gretna.

And the natural phenomenon is mesmerising motorists and others who pass by.

The roosting birds swarm and swoop to create some marvellous scenes, which people travel from far and wide to see during the late autumn and early winter.

Majestically, they even managed to look as though they lined up in formation to create a bird-like shape earlier this week.

Bird experts say the murmuration is a method of defence from predators as the birds land to roost at twilight.

In recent years, the Solway has become a nationally-recognised ground for seeing the birds in flight.


The shoreline at Gretna is one of two major sites locally renowned for watching the birds dazzle.

The birds prefer calm weather for their hypnotic displays and are frequently seen flying together, then dropping down into bushes and reeds to roost along the Solway.

Tarn Sike Nature Reserve, near Carlisle, is another place where people regularly flock to in order to see birds in flight.

Starlings are said to be easily vulnerable to disturbance, so those turning out to try and watch them up close are urged to keep noise to a minimum before, during and after their roosting time.

There are thought to be about four million starlings in the UK, a decrease of 80 per cent in 40 years. They are now on the critical list of birds most at risk.