Author Topic: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds  (Read 5589 times)

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Offline The Peregrine Chick

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News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds
« on: December 03, 2010, 13:21 »
Deformed beaks in Alaska birds puzzle scientists

By Yereth Rosen, Reuters (December 2, 2010 9:01pm)

ANCHORAGE, Alaska - Crows, chickadees and other birds living year-round in Alaska are suffering an epidemic of beak deformities that is confounding scientists.

The grossly overgrown, overly-curved and sometimes crossed beaks started showing up in large numbers about a decade ago, and are now being widely reported across southern and interior Alaska, as well as neighboring parts of the Pacific northwest, said Caroline Van Hemert, a wildlife biologist.

“It’s really rare to have so many birds in a geographic area that are affected at one time,” said Van Hemert, who co-authored a pair of studies published in the current edition of The Auk, the quarterly journal of the American Ornithologists’ Union.

The most dramatic problems seem to be in Northwestern crows, she said.

Van Hemert and fellow U.S. Geological Survey scientist Colleen Handel found the rate of beak deformities among adult crows to be 16.9 percent, the highest rate of gross deformities ever recorded in a wild bird population.

On some parts of the Kenai Peninsula, south of Anchorage, the beak deformity rate hit 36 percent, according to the biologists’ research.

Hardest hit were black-capped chickadees, according to the studies.

Since 1999, scientists have documented beak deformities in 2,160 chickadees, mostly in and around Anchorage. About 6.5 percent of the chickadees in the region have the deformed beaks, according to the newly reported studies.

Other affected birds include Steller’s jays, woodpeckers and magpies. Many of the birds also have abnormalities in their skin, legs, claws or feathers.

Potential causes include environmental pollution, nutritional deficiencies or disease, according to the scientists.

Van Hemert said she and other scientists have few clues to the cause.

“At this point, we really don’t know,” she said Thursday.

The deformed beaks make if difficult for the birds to feed and preen.

“A lot of birds with the really severe deformities can’t open up a sunflower seed,” Van hemert said.
« Last Edit: January 01, 2012, 16:43 by The Peregrine Chick »

Offline The Peregrine Chick

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« Last Edit: January 01, 2012, 16:44 by The Peregrine Chick »

Offline Ellie

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Re: Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds / 2011
« Reply #2 on: July 26, 2011, 11:13 »
What a  job Mom and Pop have feeding that "Big Mouth".  The reed warblers are so small :o  Thanks for the link TPC.  It was worth it.  There is another bird that does that too.  Is it the cowbird?

Offline Doreen

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Re: Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds / 2011
« Reply #3 on: July 26, 2011, 12:09 »
What a  job Mom and Pop have feeding that "Big Mouth".  The reed warblers are so small :o  Thanks for the link TPC.  It was worth it.  There is another bird that does that too.  Is it the cowbird?

Yep, stupid cowbird.  :(

Offline The Peregrine Chick

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Re: Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds / 2011
« Reply #4 on: July 26, 2011, 13:30 »
Actually, this really is a cuckoo - the story is from the UK ...

http://www.rspb.org.uk/wildlife/birdguide/name/c/cuckoo/
Royal Society for the Protection of Birds website ...

Offline Leana

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Re: Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds / 2011
« Reply #5 on: July 26, 2011, 18:20 »
When I see something like this I just can't believe that nature can be so cruel!  How can those poor little reed warblers even hope to feed that enormous "child" of theirs.  And the fact the cuckoo gets rid of their eggs when it hatches.  So mean!!! But what a valiant effort the warblers are making.  Most amazing photos!

Offline susha

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Re: Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds / 2011
« Reply #6 on: July 26, 2011, 21:11 »
They're beautiful to look at, but nasty!

Offline birdcamfan

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Re: Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds / 2011
« Reply #7 on: July 26, 2011, 21:26 »
OMG it looks like it's going to eat the Mom! This is what it must be like for Moms of twins/triplets.

Offline The Peregrine Chick

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News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds / 2012
« Reply #8 on: January 01, 2012, 16:36 »
Not again! Thousands of birds fall dead in Arkansas on New Year's Eve

by Michael Sheridan / New York Daily News
Sunday, January 1 2012, 2:49 PM

Similar mass death occurred on New Year's Eve in 2010; experts believe fireworks scared birds, caused panic




Thousands of blackbirds dropped dead on New Year's Eve in Arkansas in an incident eerily similar to one that occurred at the same time a year ago.

The disturbing deaths in Beebe, a city northwest of Little Rock, were sparked after loud fireworks sent flocks of the small birds into a panic, scientists said. This caused them to collide with each other, as well as power lines, houses and cars.

Officer John Weeks said the first reports of "birds on the streets" came around 7 p.m. as residents celebrated the year's end with fireworks in their neighborhoods, The Associated Press reported.

Police worked with animal control workers to locate and clean up the bird bodies.

On New Year's Eve 2010, an estimated 3,000 to 5,000 birds died from "blunt trauma" after they were similarly spooked by fireworks.

Eyewitnesses told authorities "the birds were hitting mailboxes, cars, basketball goals, houses, trees," Keith Stephens of the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission told the Daily News last January. "The trauma shows that they were in flight when they collided with something that killed them."

The bird deaths, which were followed only days later by hundreds of more bird deaths in Louisiana, sparked conspiracy theories ranging from the Biblical end of the world to government coverups.



Read more: http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/thousands-birds-fall-dead-arkansas-year-eve-article-1.999476#ixzz1iFTTPQ7p

Offline The Peregrine Chick

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds / 2012
« Reply #9 on: March 03, 2012, 12:49 »
Nothern Wheatear - Migration Sensation!



This little bird seems to have taken over the record for migratory dominance!!  They are small songbirds - larger than a European robin but smaller than a North American one (Wikipedia).  This bird nests in the Arctic, frequently raising two families before migrating south.  Now this species is not indigenous to North America rather their breeding range has expanded into northern Canada from the east and from Russia through Alaska in the west.  Why is this important?  Because the birds' migratory destination is Africa, not Central/South America!  But no one knew what they did exactly until they put tiny transmitters on them and then tracked them over their 30,000km annual round trips.  Their migrations are 1-2 months long - shorter in spring, longer in the fall.

Tiny songbird northern wheatear traverses the world‎ - BBC News

This tiny songbird makes a non-stop 14500km migration each year from Alaska to Africa - The National Post



Offline irenekl

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds / 2012
« Reply #10 on: March 06, 2012, 11:46 »
I was listening to a bird segment on CBC Radio Quirks & Quarks on the wknd and I believe this is the same bird they discussed as having an incredible migration range.  They had a backpac on it similar to the one attached to Rain & Rosser.  The information gained about this tiny thing crossing the ocean was so amazing I could hardly believe what I was hearing.  So fascinating!  I will go back online to see if I can find this segment and share it here.  I've learned alot about birds from this program.  For whatever reason they often discuss birds.  Gotta love that CBC radio!

Offline bcbird

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds / 2012
« Reply #11 on: March 06, 2012, 17:32 »
I was listening to a bird segment on CBC Radio Quirks & Quarks on the wknd... I've learned alot about birds from this program.  For whatever reason they often discuss birds.  Gotta love that CBC radio!

I think I found the Quirks and Quarks summary of the program you heard Irenekl.  I love the variety of information presented on Q&Q.
http://www.cbc.ca/quirks/
 
Marathon Migration

Northern Wheatear - copyright Ómar Runólfsson
The Northern Wheatear is a small (25g) songbird that lives in two main groups; one in the eastern Canadian Arctic, Greenland and Eurasia; the other in Alaska.  Although its winter migration destination was suspected, it was only proven recently.  Using tiny geo-locaters strapped to the birds like back-packs, Dr. Ryan Norris, an Assistant Professor from the Department of Integrative Biology at the University of Guelph, was able to track what turns out to be an astonishing route.  The birds in the eastern Arctic group migrate across the Atlantic, then south to the west side of sub-Sahara Africa.  An incredible 3,500kms!  The group from Alaska migrate through Asia to the east side of sub-Sahara Africa - 14,500kms!  Both migrations involve amazing distances per day for many months, making the Wheatear's migration route the longest for a bird of its size.   

Offline Kinderchick

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds / 2012
« Reply #12 on: March 06, 2012, 20:47 »
Yes! Very interesting program with lots of info about birds and wildlife, in general.

Offline irenekl

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds / 2012
« Reply #13 on: March 08, 2012, 10:13 »
Thanks for posting that bcbird.  I got all excited and then got too busy to go search the cbc website.   :-[

Offline bcbird

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds / 2012
« Reply #14 on: March 08, 2012, 16:25 »
You're welcome Irenekl.  I have lots of Q&Q podcasts downloaded, and was very pleased to go troll the CBC site for one of my favourite shows.

Offline jadoo

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds / 2012
« Reply #15 on: March 16, 2012, 14:30 »
...I knew that there are a lot of different breeds of chickens, but I had no idea there were so many different (and WEIRD) looking pigeons - I thought they all looked like the ones we all see flying around here...whatever they look like to us, I'm sure the falcons would look at all of them and simply think "Lunch!"...

  http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/42645029


Offline susha

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds / 2012
« Reply #16 on: March 16, 2012, 16:34 »
Very interesting Jadoo!  I think you're right, the PF's would be thinking "lunch", although some of them were pretty scrawny... :P

Offline Jazzerkins

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds / 2012
« Reply #17 on: March 16, 2012, 17:35 »
Some really strange looking birds ???

Offline Kinderchick

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds / 2012
« Reply #18 on: March 16, 2012, 19:52 »
Well, who knew there were so many different fancy pigeons?! I want a "Frillback" (#17). 8)

Offline RCF

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds / 2012
« Reply #19 on: April 27, 2012, 00:09 »
I thought this was very entertaining  8) ;D  Who knew pigeons could be so sly!

Pigeon Impossible is the tale of Walter, a rookie secret agent faced with a problem seldom covered in basic training: what to do when a curious pigeon gets trapped inside your multi-million dollar, government-issued nuclear briefcase.

http://www.youtube.com/watch_popup?v=jEjUAnPc2VA#t=20
« Last Edit: April 27, 2012, 00:20 by Rapidcitymbfan »

Offline The Peregrine Chick

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds / 2012
« Reply #20 on: April 27, 2012, 10:19 »
I loved the pigeon!! Smart I already knew - they are used for Search-and-Rescue because they can spot particular colours (rescue red/orange/yellow in particular I believe) at incredible distances and interestingly, they indicate when they have seen something by pushing buttons - so know they can do that too.  Persistent yup, no doubt about that one - this pigeon takes it to a whole other realm however!

Not sure that I will sit eating bagels on (or beside) a park bench anymore though  ;) ;D

Nice find RCF!

Offline eagle63_1999

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds / 2012
« Reply #21 on: April 27, 2012, 12:06 »
Loved it RCF lmao!!!

Offline Kinderchick

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds / 2012
« Reply #22 on: April 27, 2012, 13:08 »
This was great, rcf! I really enjoyed watching it. Nice little break in the middle of the day. And all the pigeon wanted was a bagel. ::) 8)

Offline Pam

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds / 2012
« Reply #23 on: April 28, 2012, 22:01 »
good one RCF!

Offline The Peregrine Chick

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds / 2012
« Reply #24 on: August 26, 2012, 11:43 »
Ingenuity in the face of renovations - and wonderful photos ...

http://www.radioactiverobins.com/swifts-oostvoorne/swifts%20on%20the%20loose%20and%20saved.htm

Netherleands - swifts - nesting colony - roof renovations ...  :)

Offline Kinderchick

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds / 2012
« Reply #25 on: September 01, 2012, 12:52 »
Wow! What great little nestboxes! 8)

Offline RCF

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds / 2012
« Reply #26 on: October 08, 2012, 16:07 »
   :)   This past spring, an Ottawa family discovered an injured baby bird in the grass near a bike path and took it home to nurse it back to health.

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/ottawa/story/2012/09/28/ottawa-walter-the-crow.html

Offline allikat

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds / 2012
« Reply #27 on: October 08, 2012, 20:36 »
Thank you so much for that heartwarming story, RCF!


I am truly amazed by things that happen everyday in our small world, but that story, touched my heart.  Thank you!

Offline Jazzerkins

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds / 2012
« Reply #28 on: October 09, 2012, 05:59 »
Great story.  Thanks for sharing.  Brought a smile to my face. :D

Offline Kinderchick

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds / 2012
« Reply #29 on: October 09, 2012, 10:10 »
What a lovely story! Thanks for posting it, RCF. :-* It reminded me of another story that I came across a few years ago about a frienship that developed between a crow and a cat. Every day, the crow would come to call on the cat, perching in a tree outside it's home, till the owners of the cat let him/her outside. Then the crow and the cat would go off for the day, hanging out and playing together, till the evening, when they would return to the cat's home. 8)

http://channel.nationalgeographic.com/channel/videos/the-cat-and-the-crow/

Offline irenekl

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds / 2012
« Reply #30 on: October 09, 2012, 11:02 »
Two fantastic stories.  I just love those!  Beats all those documentaries of animals in the wild violently killing eachother for some dinner. ;)

Offline dodobird

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds / 2012
« Reply #31 on: October 09, 2012, 12:01 »
Two beautiful stories!  Thank you!

Offline The Peregrine Chick

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News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds / 2013
« Reply #32 on: February 11, 2013, 12:05 »
Ruling on Toronto Cadillac Fairview building's bird window deaths expected Monday
Toronto Metro News - 10 Feb 2013



Thud after dull thud, the birds crashed into the twinkling glass panes of the north Toronto office buildings, falling dead or crippled to the pavement.

More than 800 migrating birds met this fate between March and November 2010, argued EcoJustice lawyer Albert Koehl in a 10-day trial last April against Cadillac Fairview, the owners of the Yonge Corporate Centre at 4100, 4110 and 4120 Yonge St, near York Mills.

The reflective panes of glass mirror the trees and the sky, creating a “fatal illusion” that makes the birds think they have a clear flight path.

Cadillac Fairview faces three charges under the federal Species at Risk Act, the Environmental Protection Act and the Ontario Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act. The company pleaded not guilty.

A potentially precedent-setting judgment in the case is expected Monday from Ontario Judge Melvyn Green.

If there is a conviction, it means that companies can be held liable for killing birds through window strikes, says Koehl.

“There haven’t been any cases to that effect ever,” he added.

Ecojustice lost a similar lawsuit — the first of its kind in North America — in November.

While Justice of the Peace William Turtle agreed that the birds were dying at Menkes Development’s Consilium Place in Scarborough, long determined by FLAP as the deadliest building complex for birds in Toronto, he ruled that Menkes was making no active effort to harm the birds. The decision has been appealed.

“From an environmental standpoint (the upcoming decision) is crucial, quite frankly,” says Michael Mesure, executive director of the Fatal Light Awareness Program, a Toronto non-profit that educates the public about birds colliding with windows.

Even if the judge acquits Cadillac Fairview, he could still find that emitting reflective light is something that should be regulated under the Environmental Protection Act, like discharging odours or vibrations, Koehl said.

Should Cadillac Fairview be found liable, they could face hefty fines. The maximum fine under the Environmental Protection Act is $6 million per day and that OSPCA Act maximum fine is $60,000.

Despite losing the Menkes case, “we won the war,” says Mesure. Both Consilium Place (now owned by Kevric Real Estate Corporation) and the Yonge Corporate Centre have put up visual markers that warn the birds and collisions have decreased significantly, he says.

The bird film applied last summer to the Yonge Corporate Centre may have the potential to reduce bird strikes by up to 80 per cent, according to a Cadillac Fairview spokesperson.

The City of Toronto requires any building built after January 2010 to include measures to reduce bird strikes.


To see the story online - http://metronews.ca/news/toronto/544338/ruling-on-toronto-cadillac-fairview-buildings-bird-window-deaths-expected-monday/

Offline The Peregrine Chick

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds / 2013
« Reply #33 on: February 11, 2013, 12:48 »
Update ...

Building’s owner not liable for bird deaths, court rules
Alyshah Hasham, Toronto Star - 11 Feb 2013


The owner of a North Toronto office complex once deemed “lethal” for migrating birds will not be held liable, Ontario Court Justice Melvyn Green ruled Monday morning.

Green agreed that several hundreds of migrating birds have been killed or injured after crashing into the mirror-like windows at Cadillac Fairview’s Yonge Corporate Centre.

However, he ruled that the company did exercise “due diligence” in tackling the “untimely deaths” of birds crashing into their windows.

Despite the decision, Ecojustice lawyer Albert Koehl says the ruling in the landmark case heard last April sets the precedent they have been hoping for, opening the door for the prosecution of other companies who are not addressing the safety of migratory birds.

Under the provincial Environmental Protection Act, Cadillac Fairview was deemed responsible for “discharging a contaminant” in the form of light radiation from the reflective windows.

The birds are lured to their deaths by the illusion of a clear flight path created by the reflection of the sky and trees.

Cadillac Fairview was charged under the Environmental Protection Act and the Ontario Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act.

It also faced a charge under the federal Species at Risk Act related to the death of several Canada warblers and one olive-sided flycatcher, both threatened species under the act.

Only the EPA and the SARA charges were deemed valid by Green.

The company was acquitted of all charges – avoiding potentially hefty fines – because it met the requirement for due diligence.

Since the case launched, Cadillac Fairview has taken measures to make the Yonge Corporate Centre safer for the birds attracted by the wooded ravine and golf course nearby.

An innovative window film applied to part of the office complex last year has saved hundreds of birds, according to the Fatal Light Awareness Program, a Toronto non-profit organization.

A similar retrofit has been applied at a building involved in a previous lawsuit by Ecojustice against Consilium Place in Scarborough.

That lawsuit ended in defeat for Ecojustice when the court ruled that while the building had caused fatal avian collisions, the owners of the building were not actively trying to harm the birds.

Ecojustice is appealing that decision.

The City of Toronto requires all buildings constructed after 2010 to include measures to reduce bird strikes.


Story online here - http://www.thestar.com/news/gta/2013/02/11/buildings_owner_not_liable_for_bird_deaths_court_rules.html

Offline The Peregrine Chick

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds
« Reply #34 on: January 27, 2014, 00:31 »
Pope's peace doves attacked by crow and seagull
Associated Press / 26 January 2014   

Fate of white doves unclear after being released by children standing alongside pontiff in front of crowd in St Peter's Square

Two white doves that were released as a peace gesture by children standing alongside Pope Francis were attacked by other birds.  As tens of thousands of people watched in St Peter's Square on Sunday, a seagull and a large black crow swept down on the doves after they were set free from an open window of the Apostolic Palace.  One dove lost some feathers as it broke free from the gull. But the crow pecked repeatedly at the other dove. It was not clear what happened to the doves as they flew off.

Speaking at the window beforehand, Francis appealed for peace in Ukraine, where anti-government protesters have died.



link to source (with photos): http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/jan/26/pope-doves-attacked-by-crow-seagull-st-peters-square

Offline The Peregrine Chick

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds
« Reply #35 on: May 28, 2014, 22:38 »
This from a birders e-loop I listen in on ... made me smile ...

Hi guys today Amélie from Beaverhill Bird Observatory, Alberta retrap one of our birds.. Yes we say our bird, because we band it...it's not your birds, no way...but I guess she is super happy.(we are too, of course)

A least Flycatcher who flew 4100+km (2547 miles) from may 5 2013 Minatitlan, southern Veracruz State to may 28, 2014. Alberta, in the middle of nowhere..

A wonderful link between México and Canada...

Please don't close your nets, we are sending more birds, yesterday an alder Flycatcher and the last very late Gray Catbird... an we are ready to receive yours for the next fall...



... bird banders are such happy odd creatures when one of "theirs" turns up ... even in the middle of nowhere ....  ;D

Offline The Peregrine Chick

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds
« Reply #36 on: April 13, 2015, 10:31 »
Birds in the Maritimes are starving, unable to find food in deep snow
TWN News / Katie Jones reporting

Saturday, April 11, 2015, 3:36 PM -   Maritime residents are being asked to come to the aid of starving birds across the region in the midst of persisting cold temperatures and heavy snow.

Piles of snow left behind by months of wintry storms still cover much of the ground across the Maritime provinces, preventing birds from foraging for food.

The issue has become a growing concern as it coincides with the beginning of spring. A lack of proper food sources is taking the greatest toll on migratory birds that have recently returned from the south.

The delayed start to the spring season is hindering birds from getting to the bugs, worms and seeds that they typically feast on at this time of year.



Read the rest of the story and view videos & photos at TWN News - Birds in the Maritimes are starving unable to find food in deep snow

Offline The Peregrine Chick

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News: Passerines
« Reply #37 on: May 09, 2015, 13:47 »
Hummingbird found in flower bouquet in Victoria set free
May 9, 2015 / Cindy E. Harnett / Times Colonist



A rehabilitated baby hummingbird that survived being stored in a fridge, wrapped in an Easter bouquet and carted four hours in a Victoria-bound refrigerated van was set free Friday.  The SPCA’s Wild Animal Rehabilitation Centre in Metchosin sent the seven-week old hummingbird, patient No. 15-202, buzzing away after more than a month of care.

“It was a fascinating story and quite a journey for this little bird,” said Wild ARC manager Kari Marks. “He lived through the initial ordeal, coming down here from Courtenay, and has done well since.”

While other Victorians were finding hidden eggs during the Easter holiday last month, Nancy Packard found a live hummingbird in an Easter bouquet of roses, lilies and chrysanthemums from Courtenay Fifth Street Florist.  Packard heard buzzing coming from her bouquet and thought a bee might be trapped inside. She carefully peeled back the cellophane to find the bird with its feet stuck to the tape on the packaging.  Packard’s son untangled the bird’s tiny feet, but it wouldn’t fly away. It just kept peeping and chirping, even more as it warmed up.

When the bird was unable to draw liquid from a feeder, Packard put it in a box and drove it to Wild ARC.  Staff immediately recognized the bird as a fledgling Anna’s hummingbird, common on Vancouver Island.  The bird was not feeding because it was only weeks old, Marks said. 
The bird was fed with a small syringe. Three days later, it was feeding itself and soon didn’t want human contact or attention, which is normal, said senior wildlife rehabilitator Christina Carrieres.  The hummingbird flew away Friday, weighing 4.5 grams.

Fifth Street Florist owner Steven Meier said a tiny bird’s nest was discovered underneath the shop’s salal greenery, which is added to the flower arrangements.  Meier said the “miracle” bird could have been in the salal stored in the flower shop’s back cooler for days.  Marks said the cold storage might have helped the hummingbird by slowing down its usually fast metabolism. Wild ARC treats about 80 hummingbirds a year, most the victims of cats, said Carrieres. But patient No. 15-202 was special.

“He flew straight up and strongly so,” Marks said of releasing the hummingbird. “He was a very spunky little bird.”



source:  http://www.timescolonist.com/news/local/hummingbird-found-in-flower-bouquet-in-victoria-set-free-1.1929604

Offline Kinderchick

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Re: News: Passerines
« Reply #38 on: May 09, 2015, 23:35 »
Now that was a very interesting read! Thanks for posting, TPC. :)

Offline GCG

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Re: News: Passerines
« Reply #39 on: May 10, 2015, 03:36 »
A very happy ending. Thank you for sharing!  :)

Offline burdi

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Re: News: Passerines
« Reply #40 on: May 12, 2015, 19:51 »
Very interesting story.

I wish this little bird a happy life.

Offline GCG

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Hummingbirds from EAGLEJIM
« Reply #41 on: August 31, 2015, 05:24 »
This newsletter was sent by Eaglejim (Dayton Ohio) No recent sightings of Cindy and Jim, the resident eagles of Dayton, so he wrote about flight and the Wright Brothers. As another Daytonian living here in Winnipeg, I am proud to share.

https://eastwoodeaglewatchers.wordpress.com/2015/08/31/the-wonders-of-flight/#comments

Offline Kinderchick

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Re: Hummingbirds from EAGLEJIM
« Reply #42 on: August 31, 2015, 22:14 »
Lovely blog & hummer photos! Thanks for sharing, gemcity. :)

Offline Jazzerkins

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds
« Reply #43 on: September 24, 2015, 13:14 »

Offline Kinderchick

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds
« Reply #44 on: September 25, 2015, 22:13 »
Thanks for sharing this link, Jazz.  :)

Offline The Peregrine Chick

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Re: News: Passerines
« Reply #45 on: May 24, 2016, 19:12 »
This is very very cool .... but its from a few years ago, which seems appropriate ...


World War II Carrier Pigeon With Coded Message Found In England
Huffington Post - 2 Nov 2012

A retired probation officer in England cleaning out his chimney recently was startled to sweep up a 70-year-old secret amid the soot: the skeleton of a World War II carrier pigeon with a coded message still attached to its leg.



Read the rest here: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/11/01/world-war-ii-carrier-pigeon-surrey_n_2057149.html

Offline Jazzerkins

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Re: News: Passerines
« Reply #46 on: May 24, 2016, 19:59 »
I hope there is a follow-up to tell all that are interested what exactly the message was.  I am now very curious.

Offline burdi

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds
« Reply #47 on: September 30, 2017, 06:42 »
Four rare chimney swift chicks that tumbled from a chimney in Lower Fort Garry have been rehabilitated.

Read the news story here: Rare chicks rescued in Manitoba catch flight to Ontario before heading south

Offline burdi

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds
« Reply #48 on: November 30, 2017, 23:32 »
Trouble in Manitoba’s golden-winged warblers population

NOVEMBER 28, 2017 — Manitoba offers a special home to golden-winged warblers and until recently we were thought to have the most genetically pure populations of these striking songbirds. But new research suggests this is changing.

Link to entire story: https://news.umanitoba.ca/manitobas-golden-winged-warblers-worlds-last-pure-population-touched-by-local-and-distant-conservation-problems/

Offline burdi

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds
« Reply #49 on: December 02, 2017, 13:59 »
I came across a little more information regarding the study on Manitoba’s golden-winged warblers.

Manitoba's unique golden-winged warbler population threatened by influx of blue-winged mates: study

The long-term survival of a unique bird that calls Manitoba home is being threatened by the fact the species is finding love with blue-tipped mates, a new study shows.

The province is home to the golden-winged warblers and until recently, it was believed to host one of the most genetically pure populations of the songbird in the world.

But a study from the University of Manitoba published in the Conservation Genetics journal says that some of the beautiful little birds are also carrying blue-winged warbler DNA.

"When they hybridize with the blue-winged warbler, in almost all previous populations within 50 years, the blue-winged warblers have almost completely taken over and the golden-winged warblers disappear," said Nicola Koper, a professor in the University of Manitoba Natural Resources Institute who supervised the research, on CBC Radio's Weekend Morning Show.


The entire CBC news story includes further comments by Nicola Koper.

Source: http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/manitoba/golden-winged-warbler-study-1.4430074

Offline dupre501

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds
« Reply #50 on: January 28, 2018, 12:37 »
Different kind of tweet: Study says oilpatch causes sparrows to sing a new song

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/manitoba/oilpatch-sparrow-songbird-study-1.4503932

Offline The Peregrine Chick

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds
« Reply #51 on: June 22, 2019, 12:45 »
Parasites ruin some finches’ songs by chewing through the birds’ beaks
Carolyn Wilke / Science News / 21 June 2019

Invasive parasites in the Galápagos Islands may leave some Darwin’s tree finches singing the blues.

The nonnative Philornis downsi fly infests the birds’ nests and lays its eggs there. Fly larvae feast on the chicks’ blood and tissue, producing festering wounds and killing over half of the baby birds. Among survivors, larval damage to the birds’ beaks may mess with the birds’ songs when they’re older, possibly affecting their appeal to potential mates, researchers report June 12 in Proceedings of the Royal Society B.

“What’s heartbreaking, when you’re walking through this beautiful forest, is to hear these medium tree finch males just singing and singing and not being able to attract a mate,” says Sonia Kleindorfer, a behavioral ecologist at Flinders University in Adelaide, Australia and the University of Vienna.

The fly arrived in the Galápagos probably in the 1960s. The researchers studied two finch species on Floreana Island that the fly larvae plague: the critically endangered medium tree finch (Camarhynchus pauper) and the related small tree finch (C. parvulus).

In one life stage, the larvae reside in the birds’ beaks, where they chew up the keratin and soft tissue, enlarging the birds’ nostrils, called nares. Kleindorfer and colleagues wondered how this impacts the birds’ song and the sexual selection that results from it.

So the scientists captured finches, measured their nares and then tagged and released them back into the wild. Then, the researchers recorded and analyzed the songs of 77 birds.

The medium tree finch usually makes a more metallic bell-like sound, while the small tree finches’ lower-pitch tune sounds like “cha cha cha,” Kleindorfer says. But in both species, birds with the most deformed beaks sang at a lower pitch than birds with normal beaks.

The song of the medium tree finch normally sounds bell-like (first sound clip). But those with parasite-deformed beaks tend to make lower-pitched sounds (second sound clip), more similar to the related small tree finch.

“If you have a beak with a gaping hole, you cannot hit the high notes,” she says. For medium tree finches, the deformity meant they sounded similar to a small tree finch with a healthy beak. That may explain why scientists had previously had observed female medium tree finches choosing small male tree finches as partners, instead of males from their own species. The researchers did not observe female small tree finches choosing medium tree finch mates.

The research also suggests that the parasites’ impact on birdsong is affecting the birds’ success in finding a mate. From 2004 to 2014, the researchers tracked the courtships of 52 males, watching the birds during two-week stretches in February that coincided with when males prepare a nest and work to impress a female.

The birds with the most altered songs took 36 to 73 percent more days to woo a female, the team found. And those were the lucky ones. Overall, about half of the seven small and 15 medium tree finches followed never wound up with a mate.

But hybrids — with one parent of each species — fared far better in attracting mates, with song quality having no measured effect on whether these birds made a match. Only 2, or 7 percent, of 30 male hybrids studied remained unpaired. Fewer parasites also infest the nests of hybrid birds, and they tend to have less beak deformation, Kleindorfer says. 

“Because the hybrids have such a large advantage, at least one species, the medium tree finch, will disappear,” predicts Heinz Richner, an evolutionary biologist at the University of Bern in Switzerland who was not involved in the study. In part because of how the parasite messes with their mating signal, the two species may merge into one.


Source: https://www.sciencenews.org/article/parasites-ruin-songs-darwin-finches-galapagos-islands
There a couple of audio tracks that are worth checking out


Original research citation:
S. Kleindorfer et al. Introduced parasite changes host phenotype, mating signal and hybridization risk: Philornis downsi effects on Darwin’s finch song. Proceedings of the Royal Society B. Published online June 12, 2019. doi:10.1098/rspb.2019.0461

Offline Alison

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds
« Reply #52 on: June 22, 2019, 13:32 »
Thank you for the really interesting article, TPC. Very sad that this is happening. Do you know if there is any way to treat this particular type of parasite infestation?

Offline The Peregrine Chick

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds
« Reply #53 on: June 22, 2019, 16:50 »
My understanding is that that is one of the avenues they are working on - but because the parasite can attack in various stages of its development - inside the bird, then in the nest proper (that's the stage where it comes out and attacks the nestlings at night) how do you treat an entire island system at the same time without injuring everything? It's not going to be easy ...

Offline The Peregrine Chick

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds
« Reply #54 on: October 22, 2019, 15:34 »
The "migrating birds' are Chimney Swifts, a provincially, federally & internationally designated species-at-risk ...

Over 300 migrating birds smashed into Charlotte's NASCAR building
Amanda Watts & Eric Levenson / CNN / 16 Oct 2019

(CNN) Dozens of migratory birds were killed Tuesday night when more than 300 of them struck a building in downtown Charlotte, North Carolina, the Carolina Waterfowl Rescue group said on its verified Facebook page.

The birds, identified as chimney swifts, hit the windows of the NASCAR Hall of Fame building, according to video from CNN affiliate WSOC.  The organization said that of the 310 chimney swifts that flew into the building, roughly a third were killed and 100 were severely injured, sustaining broken wings, legs or other fractures.  Other birds appeared to be stunned and will hopefully be released in a few days, the group said.


The NASCAR Hall of Fame building in Charlotte, North Carolina.

On Wednesday morning, the organization posted a plea for volunteers to help in their recovery.  "We desperately need help feeding them and will be posting for volunteers tomorrow. They all have to be hand fed. I'm not sure how we will manage but where there is a will there is a way," the group said.  When injured, the birds have to be hand fed lots of worms. "It's an expensive endeavor but these birds are an incredible contributor to our ecosystem and eat hundreds of mosquitoes a day," Carolina Waterfowl Rescue said.

The chimney swift, sometimes called a "cigar with wings" because of its appearance, is a migratory bird that travels from the United States to South America in large flocks in the fall. The birds feed on flying insects and commonly live in residential chimneys or hollow trees. 


The chimney swift migrates each fall from the eastern United States to South America.

Every year, around 600 million birds die after striking tall buildings, and Chicago, Houston and Dallas are especially deadly, according to research from the Cornell Lab of Ornithology.  The problem is exacerbated by the migration's timing, as many birds fly at night. Attracted by the glow of skyscrapers in the dark, they are vulnerable to collision -- either with each other or the buildings. For some, the light can prove so disorientating that they flutter around for hours, eventually becoming exhausted and landing in inhospitable environments.

In a Facebook live video, Carolina Waterfowl Rescue said the birds most likely had been disturbed from their roosting area or were migrating.


source: https://edition.cnn.com/2019/10/16/us/birds-nascar-building-trnd/index.html

Offline GCG

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds
« Reply #55 on: October 23, 2019, 04:55 »
 :'( Most of us look forward to posts that enlightens us and puts a smile on our faces, but sometimes there is a downside, such as this article. This is so sad and hard to read. Thank you TPC for posting this for me/us. I say a little prayer for our migrating falcons and look forward to their return in the spring.

Offline carly

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds
« Reply #56 on: October 23, 2019, 18:49 »
 :'( :'( :'(  Heartbreaking  :'( :'( :'(

Offline The Peregrine Chick

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds
« Reply #57 on: November 12, 2019, 14:31 »
Pigeon steals poppies, creates 'commemorative' nest above Australian war memorial
Christy Somos  /  CTVNews.ca  / 11 Nov 2019

TORONTO – A pigeon has been stealing poppies from the Tomb of the Unknown Australian Soldier at the Australian War Memorial in Canberra and making a nest out of the flowers in the alcove of a stained glass window.

“Each day the pigeon has been flying down… to steal poppies, carefully crafting a nest in the lead-up to Remembrance Day in an alcove above the stained-glass window of a wounded Australian soldier,” the website for the Australian War Memorial reads.

The poignancy of the bird using the unusual nest materials is not lost on the Memorial’s staff, as the website explores the history of soldiers using pigeons during wartime.

“Between 1942 and 1943, pigeon fanciers across the country gave some 13,500 trained pigeons to the army for signals use purposes,” the website says. “There are lots of stories of pigeons valiantly going forward and saving people’s lives.” 


 
A pigeon roosts in a nest built of poppies taken from the Tomb of the Unknown Australian Soldier at the Australian War Memorial in Canberra (Australian War Memorial)

 
A pigeon takes a poppy from the Tomb of the Unknown Australian Soldier at the Australian War Memorial in Canberra (Australian War Memorial)


source: https://www.ctvnews.ca/world/pigeon-steals-poppies-creates-commemorative-nest-above-australian-war-memorial-1.4679584

Offline carly

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds
« Reply #58 on: November 12, 2019, 15:41 »
 :-* :-* :-* :-*

Offline dupre501

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds
« Reply #59 on: November 13, 2019, 13:07 »
That is so cute and funny. Love it.

Offline The Peregrine Chick

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds
« Reply #60 on: December 03, 2019, 11:34 »
Another pigeon story - just the link this time because you absolutely must see the photos ... but here's a teaser!


Phenomenal murals highlight extraordinary lives of humble pigeons
Kimberley Mok / Treehugger / 19 Oct 2019



Offline carly

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds
« Reply #61 on: December 11, 2019, 18:46 »
Wow!

Offline dupre501

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds
« Reply #62 on: December 12, 2019, 13:32 »
Hi TPC, I don't see a link. But your teaser photo is great.

Offline sami

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Re: News: Songbirds, Swifts & Hummingbirds
« Reply #63 on: December 13, 2019, 10:59 »
Dupre - just click on the teaser photo