It's a bird! It's an Israeli spy! It's a — well, it's probably a bird.
Turkish authorities are investigating a dead bird they think could might be an Israeli spy, Israeli newspaper Yedioth Ahronoth reported.
According to the report, a farmer found the dead European bee-eater and noticed that its leg was banded with a ring that said "Israel." (Bird-banding lets ornithologists track migration routes.)
He handed the bird's body over to the government, and security officials investigating it found what they reportedly considered cause for alarm: Its suspiciously sized nostrils.
The nostrils were large enough for Israeli intelligence agency Mossad to have implanted a surveillance device inside, according to the report.
But a bird expert told Yedioth Ahronoth that the bee-eaters often pass through Israel and Turkey during their migration from Europe, and a conservation society confirmed that the bird under investigation was banded four years ago.
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Birds banded in Israel have triggered suspicion in the region before. According to Yedioth Ahronoth, last year Saudi Arabia detained an Israel-banded vulture carrying a GPS transmitter with Tel Aviv University's name on it, suspecting it of an espionage plot.