As soon as the new year hit, pretty much exactly at the stroke of midnight, dead birds started falling from the sky. This is either some sick marketing scheme for Angry Birds, or the apocalypse is upon us. While we haven't started seeing dead pigeons raining down on us here in New York (yet), the mass animal deaths are continuing around the world. It seemed to begin with hundreds of thousands of dead birds and fish in Arkansas, which is alarming enough on its own, but then Louisiana saw hundreds of dead blackbirds falling from the sky, and now the Daily News is reporting on the doomsday scenario... though they neglect to mention the thousands of doves that fell from the sky in Italy! More on that later.

The paper reports that hundreds of dead birds were discovered on streets in Kentucky (grackles, red wing blackbirds, robins and starlings)—none of which were found to have diseases or to have been poisoned. In Sweden more dead birds fell from the sky, and in England 40,000 dead crabs washed up on the beach. Other mass animal deaths were discovered in Brazil, New Zealand, Florida, and Maryland.

Officials say the explanation is probably nothing out of the ordinary (some say it could be weather-related). But what about those doves? Over in Italy thousands of collared doves in Faenza have been discovered dead "in heaps in the flower beds, crushed by machinery in the streets, horribly hung from trees like Christmas balls." When the symbol for peace is dying off, that can't be good. The only comfort we have now is that Kirk Cameron doesn't think it's the end of the world.

Meanwhile, in New York, the state just released a report on rising sea levels (New York Harbor is expected to rise 2 to 5 inches within the next 20 years), but the city reportedly doesn't want to follow the Sea Level Rise Task Force's advice to move critical infrastructure away from flood zones. The report mentions New York City as one of the most at-risk areas for flooding, and says "the likelihood that powerful storms will hit New York State's coastline is very high, as is the associated threat to human life and coastal infrastructure." The state believes that storm surge barriers may be too expensive and should be avoided.