THE Royal Society for the Protection of Birds [RSPB] has said travelling to ‘view starling murmuration’ is not ‘essential travel’.

The charity has placed a warning on its information page about the Otmoor nature reserve stating that travelling to view the birds is not in accordance with Government guidelines.

 Coronavirus restrictions currently in place state that any travel away from the home must be ‘essential’, such as going to work or daily outdoor exercise.

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The RSPB warning said: “In line with Government guidance on essential, daily exercise outdoors, our trails are open.

“We urge you to follow the legislation around non-essential travel and please visit your most local nature reserves and green spaces only.

“We continue to ask that you do not visit to view the starling murmuration as this is not essential travel.

“Please observe current guidelines on social distancing, face coverings, group sizes, hygiene, and follow all signage on-site.”

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Starling murmuration’s take place in the winter months between October and March.

The peak in numbers is usually December to January when more birds come over from Europe and join the UK’s resident birds.

The murmuration is a ‘mass aerial stunt’ where ‘thousands of birds all swooping and diving in unison’.

Starlings do this for several reasons, including for protection, for warmth and over roosting sites.