Flock of VULTURES seen circling over Manhattan during coronavirus lockdown as US fatalities top 40,000 – The Sun

VULTURES were pictured circling over New York's skyline as the city continues to be plagued by the ever-worsening coronavirus pandemic.

In an eerie set of images, the scavengers were spotted flying across Downtown Manhattan on Friday — before the nation's Covid-19 death toll reached 39,015.

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The arrival of the birds come as a morgue truck worker had to use bedsheets to carry up to 80 corpses after body bags ran out amidst the coronavirus crisis.

Though most birds lack any sense of smell, vultures can sniff out a dead corpse from more than a mile away.

The three birds were snapped over the top of the USNS Comfort — the hospital ship brought to the city last month with the aim of providing relief for overflowing hospitals.

The photos were made all the more ominous by the fact the city largely lay empty behind the birds as they circled the gray and gloomy sky.

In one snap, a vulture was seen stretching out its wings as it flew near the One World Trade Center — a poignant reminder of another tragic event that brought New York to its knees nearly two decades ago.

On Friday, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo confirmed The Big Apple's death toll from Covid-19 had reached 17,671 — more than six times the number of people killed during the terror attacks on September 11, 2001.

While hospitalization rates across New York City have dropped in recent days, the daily death rate remains consistently high.

Stay-at-home orders across the entirety of New York State have been extended until mid-May, while Mayor Bill de Blasio has cancelled all public events until at least the month of June.

On Sunday, de Blassio said that New Yorkers should blame him for the shutdown — as pressure grows on governors to ease the coronavirus lockdowns.

Speaking at his daily press briefing in Albany, Cuomo also revealed New York is "past the high point" of the pandemic — but warned it is "only halftime in the war” against the disease.

While the sight of vultures circling over abandoned New York City skyscrapers feels ominous, it's the latest example of nature appearing to return to places left empty by the coronavirus pandemic.

Last month, wild turkeys were seen on the streets of Oakland, California.

Meanwhile, deer have been spotted in train stations in Japan, while wild boar are roaming Barcelona's deserted city streets.

And a group of dolphins have been swimming off the beaches of South France, while a puma was pictured in the center of Santiago, Chile.

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