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Animal Rains: a metheorogical phenomenon

Updated on December 2, 2016

The number of reported events about animals falling from the sky is amazing but easy to understand when explained.

Small animals like reptiles or small fish can be carried by waterspouts and strong winds just by accident and dropped by hazard. They were just living their usual life when pulled away. Birds fall down also against their will, when caught by weather or fireworks.

The most amazing ones are the spiders. They create the way to float through the air with their ballooning technique of migrating. This has been observed and described in scientific literature since the mid-19th century. Charles Darwin, for instance, in his voyage aboard H.M.S. Beagle observed the ship being covered by spiders, 60 miles off the coast of Argentina.



Fish are the most common animals to have rained down. Pliny the Elder, in the first century AD, already mentioned such events.

BBC reported on August 2004 a fish shower after a thunderstorm and heavy rain in the Shropshire village of Knighton, Wales.

In Kerala, India, residents were surprised by small fish raining after a storm on February 12, 2008

On October 2009, a Fish Rain first took place in Bhanwad and than in Bantiya villages of Junagadh district, India.

In Lajamanu, Australia after torrential rains, it was reported fish falling from the sky.
The freak phenomena happened not once, but twice, on February 2010.

In 2012 residents of Loreto town in Agusan del Sur, Philippines experienced this phenomenon when dozens of 3-inch-long mudfish rained on them.

In 2015 an unusual fish rain happened in the Gollamudi village of Nandigama Mandal near Vijayawada. Hundreds of fish rained from the sky and fell in the fields.

The video is about fish raining in Thailand, on April, 2015, by BBC.

Another fish rain happened at Dire Dawa, Ethiopia on January, 2016.

At Pathapatnam, Srikakulam district, India on 19 May 2016 it was reported another one.

Lluvia de Peces (Rain of Fish) is a phenomenon that has allegedly been occurring yearly for more than a century in Yoro, Honduras.



Threads of silk following a mass spider ballooning

This is a 2015 video in Goulburn, South Australia, where thousands and thousands of baby spiders arrived from the sky. This happens (as already mentioned) because, in order to migrate, spiders climb very high and then use their web silk to flow like wearing a parachute and turn around, a technique called ballooning.

There was a previous ‘spider rain’ incident in Australia at Albury, New South Wales, in 1974.

In 2013, hundreds of spiders in the air were also reported and caught on video in the southern Brazilian town of Santo Antônio da Platina.

Here is a part of one episode of Strangest Weather on Earth filmed at San Antonio da Platina in Brazil to explore the strange rain of spiders in 2013.

Frogs and toads


On June 2009, Ishikawa residents, in Japan were surprised by toads falling from the sky and one year later a multitude of frogs also dropped from the sky over Rákóczifalva, Hungary.



On April 2015, thousands of earthworms fell from sky near the city of Bergen, on the west coast of Norway. The snow all around was covered with alive worms perhaps because they were swept up by strong wind and carried away for a while.

Such a fact was also reported in Jennings, Louisiana on July 11, 2007.



A large number of birds falling down seems to be a little more complicated and the causes of such events continue to puzzle scientists. There are some possible reasons like high-altitude hail, lightning, tornadoes, poisoning or fireworks (although fireworks happen usually at night when most birds rest) but no one seems sure most of the times.

In 2011 5,000 blackbirds fell from the skies over Arkansas, followed by 500 more in Louisiana.
Also in 2011, it was reported that 700 dead birds had fallen from the sky in Italy, this time as a result of massive indigestion.

In 2012 about 100 dead blackbirds falling from the sky were observed in Beebe, Arkansas after flying into objects and each other.

On September, 2016 dozens of birds rained down from the sky over Boston reported by The Boston Herald.


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