Flock settles in Springfield: 'It's just something birds do'

      SPRINGFIELD, Ore. -- Thousands of birds has been swarming a Springfield neighborhood, and residents say the flocks have been chirping overhead for the last two to three weeks.

      The droves of birds are leaving residents with a whole mess of questions, one being how long they will have to keep cleaning their cars, yards and sidewalks.

      "There's thousands of them," said Ray, a resident who lives in the area. "At night they sound like water running, like you're next to a river or something. Almost kind of a rushing sound."

      The birds have been making a home in the holly trees and they're not afraid to mark their territory.

      "There are a lot of bird droppings around here and it's kind of hard on the area the cars and it gets to the point you don't want to walk outside at night," said Ray.

      Ray's neighbor, Cynthia Lang, said the mess is just the start of the problems for their neighborhood. "They're swarming the sky and within a period of a half an hour they all settle in those trees and chirp incessantly."

      Dick Lamster, a former president of the local Audubon Society, said the birds are probably just staying in the area because they've found a decent food supply and good protection.

      "It's just something birds do. They gather in groups of 200-300, mainly for protection. There's strength in numbers," said Lamster. "They help each other find food. If there's a predator or some kind of danger they'll notify each other."