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How Birds Caused A Whole Lot Of Chaos For The Deadliest Catch's Saga

While battling the chaotic Bering Sea in search of Alaskan king crab, the captains of Discovery's "Deadliest Catch" have to overcome a wide variety of dangerous and unpredictable obstacles. Longtime fans of the series will know that the crews of these various ships have to be prepared for anything that might come up on the open ocean, including gale force winds, sheets of ice that appear overnight, and storms that can capsize the boat if you're not prepared.

On top of that, the crew and captain are also forced to battle their own mental and physical exhaustion amidst these harrowing conditions — as any mistakes on their part could spell disaster for everyone aboard. The extreme dangers of this profession often force the cast to get an unhealthy amount of sleep in order to keep the ship safe around the clock, sometimes working for 40 hours straight and only getting three hours of rest.

All told, it's clear that there are plenty of obstacles you need to watch out for when working on "Deadliest Catch" — though it still might surprise some fans to learn that one such hindrance which caused the F/V Saga a whole lot of trouble was a flock of birds.

A flock of birds ripped apart the Saga's mast

During Season 18 of "Deadliest Catch," the F/V Saga was briefly swarmed by a flock of King eider (a type of duck with a unique and colorful bill), as the ship's lights disoriented the birds and caused a large number of them to crash into the mast (via YouTube). Captain Jake Anderson watched helplessly as the birds continued to slam into his mast over and over again. Yet he was unable to turn his lights off, as that would put him at risk of running into another ship in the dark.

Even the birds that didn't crash into the mast caused problems for the ship, as the surviving majority of the flock took up residence on the deck of the Saga. Deckhands were forced to remove these unwanted visitors, while also assessing the immense damage that the ship's mast took during this assault by the flock. The birds ended up destroying several lights and ripping out a decent chunk of wiring, which Anderson estimated would cost over $16,000 to repair.

Considering the fact that this entire ordeal took only around 10 minutes, it's extremely unfortunate that this bizarre bird attack ended up costing so much money. In any case, the incident served as an important reminder that there are plenty of things to watch out for in the unpredictable waters of the Bering Sea.