Do Birds Get Struck by Lightning?

do birds get struck by lightning

The answer to this question is both yes and no. While it’s true that birds are often hit by lightning, it’s also true that they’re not the only creatures that get struck. In fact, any creature that is caught in a thunderstorm is at risk of being hit by lightning.

This includes animals like deer, rabbits, squirrels, and even fish.

While it’s certainly possible for birds to get struck by lightning, it’s not something that happens all that often. In fact, most birds are able to avoid getting hit by using their keen sense of hearing and vision to detect when a storm is approaching. When they do sense an oncoming storm, they will typically take shelter in trees or other tall structures.

This helps to protect them from the brunt of the storm and also keeps them away from open areas where they would be more vulnerable to being struck by lightning.

What Do Birds Do in a Lightning Storm?

Birds are known to fly to high ground during a thunderstorm in order to avoid the lightning. Some birds will even perch on power lines or trees that have been struck by lightning in order to receive a small electrical shock that can help them navigate their way through the storm. While it is still not completely understood why birds are attracted to these areas during a thunderstorm, it is believed that the electrical current helps them orient themselves and find their way back to safety.

Where Do Birds Go When It Lightning?

When a thunderstorm approaches, many animals take cover. This includes our feathered friends, who are particularly vulnerable to lightning. So where do birds go when it starts to lightning?

The first instinct of most birds is to fly to the nearest shelter, whether that be a tree, cave or man-made structure. Once they’re safely out of the weather, they hunker down and wait for the storm to pass. However, not all birds have access to shelter when a storm hits.

Seabirds in particular are at the mercy of the elements when a thunderstorm rolls in. To stay safe, these birds will often head out to sea and ride out the storm on the water. Of course, there are always some unlucky souls who get caught in a storm without any shelter at all.

For these poor creatures, their only hope is to find a safe spot on the ground and ride it out until the danger has passed.

Are Animals Ever Struck by Lightning?

Animals are occasionally struck by lightning, although it is more common for people to be hit. In the United States, an average of 67 people are killed each year by lightning, while hundreds more suffer non-fatal injuries. Animals such as cattle and deer are particularly susceptible to being struck because they often stand in open fields during thunderstorms.

In addition, their body size makes them good conductors of electricity. Although animals can be killed by lightning, it is not as common as people think. The vast majority of animals that are struck by lightning survive.

Do Birds Fly in Thunderstorms?

Birds are capable of flying in thunderstorms, but they generally try to avoid them if possible. Flying in a thunderstorm can be dangerous for birds because they are vulnerable to being struck by lightning. In addition, the high winds and heavy rain can make it difficult for birds to fly.

If a bird does get caught in a thunderstorm, it will typically try to find shelter as quickly as possible.

How Many Birds Get Struck by Lightning a Year

Most people don’t realize that birds are actually quite vulnerable to getting struck by lightning. In fact, it is estimated that around 6,000 birds are killed by lightning strikes every year in the United States alone. This may not seem like a lot, but when you consider that there are only about 10 deaths from lightning strikes in humans each year, it becomes clear just how dangerous this can be for our feathered friends.

There are a few reasons why birds are more susceptible to being hit by lightning than other animals. For one, they tend to perch on high objects like trees and power lines, which puts them in prime position for a strike. Additionally, their small size means that they offer less resistance to the electrical current than something like a human or cow would.

So what can you do to protect your backyard birds from this deadly hazard? The best thing is to provide them with plenty of low-lying perches and nesting options so that they don’t have to take their chances on taller structures. You should also avoid putting out bird baths or feeders during thunderstorms, as these can attract birds and make them easy targets.

If you follow these simple tips, you can help keep your feathered friends safe from one of nature’s most powerful forces.

Can Planes Get Struck by Lightning

planes can get struck by lightning, but it is not common. It typically happens during a thunderstorm when the plane is close to the clouds. The lightning will hit one of the metal surfaces on the plane and travel through the electrical system.

This can cause damage to the plane and potentially injure passengers.

What Causes Lightning

Most people know that thunderstorms are caused by rising air and falling precipitation. But what causes the bright flash of lightning that accompanies thunder? Lightning is caused by an electrical discharge between clouds, or between a cloud and the ground.

The air in a thunderstorm is filled with tiny particles of water, ice, and dust. These particles collide and create an electrical charge. The charges build up until they are released in a giant spark of electricity.

The giant spark of electricity we call lightning can be as hot as 50,000 degrees Fahrenheit! That’s hotter than the surface of the sun! Lightning also creates a loud sound called thunder.

Thunder is created when the air around the lightning expands rapidly from the heat.


Birds are actually quite often struck by lightning. In fact, there are reports of up to 10,000 birds being killed by lightning every year in the United States alone. However, it is important to note that this number is likely an overestimate as many bird deaths due to lightning go unnoticed.

There are several reasons why birds are more susceptible to being hit by lightning than other animals. For one, they tend to perch on high objects such as trees and power lines which makes them more exposed to storms. Additionally, their small size means that they have a relatively large surface area in relation to their body mass which increases the chances of being struck by a bolt of electricity.

Despite the risks, most birds survive being hit by lightning thanks to their quick reflexes and ability to fly away quickly. So while it may be true that birds do get struck by lightning more often than other animals, it is still relatively rare for them to be killed by it.

Adrian Hopper

Welcome to! I created The Birds Beast to share my passion for all things birds with the rest of the world. I also belong to a professional group devoted to birds, and as a means of outreach, I use this blog to help as many people as I possibly can. Birds are some of the least treated pets in the United States. It is my fervent desire to change this, and I hope my blogging will motivate meaningful actions and allow individuals to safely handle their birds.

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