Drunk Birds Are Bedeviling A Minnesota Town, Flying Into Cars And Generally Having No Idea What's Going On

Aaron Homer

A Minnesota town is finding itself bedeviled by the cutest of problems: birds are getting drunk on fermented berries and making nuisances of themselves.

As Huffington Post reports, the police in Gilbert, Minnesota, would find it cute if it weren't such a hassle. People keep calling the cops about the menacing fine feathered friends -- as if there's anything that the police can do about it.

Here's the problem: birds generally eat berries that are still on the trees. By the time that the berries have had time to decay and ferment, the animals are long gone, having flown south for the winter. However, this year an early frost has interfered with the natural order of things, giving the birds ample opportunity to eat fruit that has started the fermentation process. And when they do that, they get "drunk."

And drunk birds aren't funny at all. Amateur ornithologist Matthew Dodder says that buzzed birds are a nightmare for drivers.

"They'll be flying kind of erratically. We typically see them flying lower than usual through traffic. They're just careless and they're not looking for cars or other obstacles... They just get sloppy and clumsy. They have actually fallen out of trees on occasion."

Outside of Gilbert, drunken animals are no laughing matter.

On the Caribbean island of St. Kitts, for example, the local monkey population has learned that human tourists often enjoy sweet and delicious drinks -- and the primates have developed a taste for their alcohol. All across the island, the vervet monkeys nab drinks from tourists who aren't looking, later falling over in intoxication, sometimes creating traffic problems.

However, according to The Daily Mail, some of the island's monkeys are apparently teetotalers, as very few of the island's monkeys repeatedly inebriated. Most drink in moderation, according to observers, and some swear alcohol off entirely.