AUSTIN, Texas — They're loud...they're obnoxious...and they've invaded a city that prides itself on being weird – and they definitely are! We are talking about none other than grackles.
Going out around dusk in Austin can feel like a scene straight out of Alfred Hitchcock's "Birds." Trying to eat outside can suddenly become a game of keep-away between you, the birds and your food.
It's obvious why the animals have a three-star review on Yelp. But how did they get here?
According to our partners at the Austin American-Statesman, research shows that humans and grackles have been living together since the 1400s in Mexico.
After the Aztecs conquered the lowlands of Mexico, they became enamored with the grackles living there because of their dark, iridescent feathers. So, they brought the birds to what is now Mexico City and began to release them.
Now you can see them on every street corner, especially ones with an H-E-B on it. Turns out, those parking lots are prime real estate for birds. The birds get to stay with their pals in the trees and can make a quick getaway.
Austinites have a love-hate relationship with them. We're simultaneously annoyed at the incessant cawing and proud that they're as loud as they want to be and demand to be seen.
They don't conform and their drama inspires art in dances, paintings and poetry every day.
"Purple iridescence. A hard-edged thrill to say. How can a person not love the chance to repeat the world...grackle?"
And while we figure out whether we hate or respect them, one thing is for sure: they're not going anywhere!
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