LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — The moon turns blood red in an eclipse. The earth shakes. And the world keeps spinning, even though these events fit into apocalyptic predictions.

So why, when swarms of winged creatures hit the dirt in Arkansas and elsewhere, do some indulge their inner conspiracy theorists?

Religious studies professor Bart D. Ehrman says there's no Bible verse about birds falling out of the sky.

But that hasn't stopped the speculation about the birds, the first of several mass wildlife deaths that some people saw as a conspiracy: A UFO. The government. A government-controlled UFO.

Scientists say celebratory fireworks on New Year's Eve likely sent the birds in Beebe, Ark., into such a tizzy that they crashed into homes, cars and each other.