Aves (birds)

Category archives for Aves (birds)

They used to hunt whooping cranes. Between that and habitat loss, the number dropped from nearly 20,0000 to a mere 1,400 during the first half of the 19th century, and continued to drop to an all time low of 15 birds in 1941. Fifteen birds, in 1941, represented the entire species. All those birds were…

These are the kinds of books you get if you are either a scientists studying bird migration and related issues, or a very serious bird geek. The first two can be obtained at very low prices used, but the third will set you back at least 50 bucks US$ if you want a used copy.…

When is a bird a real turkey?

This post at 10,000 Birds, an item I accidentally bumped into on the Internet while looking for something else, and an unusual sighting moments ago, converge. And, its a nice distracting convergence which I need right now because as I sit here one week before fishing opener, looking at the glassy surface of Hunters Bay,…

Is the age of the blog carnival at an end? A few months back, several individuals concerned with plant blogging put a fair amount of effort into reviving and updating the Berry Go Round plant carnival. The next edition of that carnival, by the way, is coming up, so you should submit a post on…

Bring your birding to the next level

Description and identification of birds, or anything else, can be done in a rote manner with straightforward reference to details. If information about enough details is available, the identification will be accurate. But as humans we hardly ever do that sort of thing. If you ask someone to describe a car they saw recently, they…

Imma let you hear all about how Hawks at a Distance: Identification of Migrant Raptors is a remarkable and important field guide, but first I want to mention that one of the most interesting parts of that guide is the forward by Pete Dunne, who himself has written a bird book or two. Dunne reviews…

Three days ago I happen to glance out the front window of our townhouse and found myself staring at a bald eagle swooping by, presumably after picking up one of the neighborhood dogs or small children1 A few minutes later, the doorbell rang. When I opened the door, no one was there but a package…

Why are all the birds dying?

Over the last few days, there have been several reports of mass die-offs of birds, and one report of a fish die-off. These events have been linked, via suggestion but not evidence, to hail, lightning, fireworks, aircraft, aliens, each other, poison gases, and even pockets of oxygen free air. Many have suggested that there may…

Dead Birds

In the renowned yet obscure documentary, “Dead Birds,” watchful men in a traditional community in Highland Papua New Guinea use the sudden flight of birds as a clue to the possible encroachment of a hidden enemy bent on blood revenge. In mines, canaries signal air too poisoned to breath by dying faster than affected humans.…

Ducks blowing in the wind

One day, about ten years ago, we were having a strong southerly fetch with small tornadoes popping out of the stormy front, so Julia and I were keeping an eye out the windows, watching wall clouds form and unform over our heads. Then, suddenly, there were these two ducks flying south, coming up over the…