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Posts Tagged ‘Birds’

Tripping the Light Fantastic

When I set out to write about a species, I start with “What is interesting about this species?”  With hummingbirds, though, what isn’t interesting about them?  The smallest of all birds, most of the hummingbirds seen in California weigh between 0.1 and 0.3 ounces (~2.5 – 4 grams) or less than 5 original M&Ms.  Probably…

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Season Tweetings – Nature’s Winter Serenade

Fee odi-odi zeeee-zaaaa-zoooo.  Nope.  Seee zreee chidli-chidli chi-chi-chi.  Not that either.  See sitli-sitli ti-ti-ti-ti-zrrrr.  Good grief, not even close.  Let’s face it.  Humans really can’t recreate this avian song on paper—a sorry statement about our language limitations rather than a reflection of this lilting song.   Generally in early to mid-November, this familiar song—a long,…

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Uncommonly Intelligent – Ravens at the Top of the Class

Call a despicable person “pond scum” and I take offense on behalf of pond scum everywhere.  Scoop up a handful of pond scum and you might actually be looking at diminutive, individual aquatic plants or even blue-green algae such as spirulina, which some health food fans herald.  Think someone is, um, “bat-guano crazy?”  Bats the…

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Day Care Gone Wild!

At best, it’s a bit confusing and startling.  Some people even use emotion-laden words such as “heart-breaking” or “sad.”  No telling how you might feel the first time you see a small bird such as a Song Sparrow working like crazy to feed a begging cowbird youngster more than twice its size.  But one thing…

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Western Scrub-Jay Species Split by AOU

Birders have been known to keep all sorts of birding lists—species ever seen; those seen this year; seen in this state, this county, this park, this yard—even lists such as “birds I’ve ID’d on television,” “birds I’ve seen on a wire,” or “birds I’ve found dead in my yard.”  (Some birders are darker than others.)…

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Birds and Climate Change

A recently-released, in-depth report by the National Audubon Society shows that global warming poses a serious threat to a majority of North American bird species. In California, the report concludes that global warming threatens the survival of 170 bird species in the coming decades. This includes iconic California birds such as the brown pelican, Allen’s…

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