Mystery of Hitchcock's 'The Birds' Revealed

Scientists believe they know what caused birds to ram themselves into homes.
1:37 | 12/28/11

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Transcript for Mystery of Hitchcock's 'The Birds' Revealed
A scientist with a passion for film says she has solved the mystery behind one of us frightening movies of all time. What would make whole flocks of birds attack. A real event inspired Alfred Hitchcock to make is classic movie and ABC's Dan Harris has the answer. We've known all along about these psychotic please killers -- -- malignant screeching and laughing dive bombing -- behavior and in the movie the birds. Is that they were based on a real life event. That event happened in 1961 when thousands of deranged sea birds descended upon north moderate bay California. Hurling themselves into the sides of houses making headlines and catching the attention and a guy named Alfred Hitchcock who had a mansion nearby. What has been in the history of these years is what caused them like birds to freak out. Enters -- bargain to a researcher at Louisiana State University whose parents wouldn't let her watch the movie as a kid. -- for -- but I -- Yeah yeah didn't. Recently professor Barbara went back and examine samples of the plankton at the birds in the area were eating back in 1961. And she found strong evidence of a naturally occurring toxin that creates confusion disorientation. And even death among birds. All eyes and -- in is for many of us not quite as sexy as say demonic possession. But even if it turns out to be at rather mundane -- -- movie it inspired is a class and Harris ABC news New York.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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