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Waterthrush Podcast #21: Soy nectar? 21 September 2014

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Episode 21 of the Waterthrush Podcast is now live.

What if we were in the midst of a mass extinction and no one knew it?  What if, every day, a great work of art was lost and no  one could ever again hear something Mozart composed or see something DaVinci painted?  In an unrelated question, does nectar taste like Kool-aid to a hummingbird, or does it taste like a beef stir-fry?

Aleteo #124: Conservation news from Colombia 7 September 2014

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Check out the latest ProAves conservation news from Colombia in Aleteo #124

News
Hope for the last lowland Bears in Colombia.
Recent records of the spectacled bear in ProAves reserves warn about the need to conserve the rainforests with the creation and strengthening of protected areas and the inclusion of the surrounding community.
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In the distant Colombian Orinoco, an educational venue replicates ProAves biological based education
In rural based educational venue, Policarpa Salvarrieta in el Anzuelo, Meta, Luis Alberto Pallares teacher and his rector Jairo Novoa, have shown that the remoteness and lack of resources are not an excuse to manage school activities aimed at conservation.
 

Visit the El Dorado Reserve, a paradise of birds
 El Dorado Bird Reserve, golden afternoons between mountains and sea. The Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta is the paradise that every ornithologist and nature lover should visit and enjoy. http://www.eldoradoreserve.org
 

Playa Post Vol. 12, issue 7 – Sep 2014 7 September 2014

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Check out the latest Playa Post, the newsletter of the Playa Lakes Joint Venture.

PLJV ConocoPhillips Grants Worth More Than Face Value
Grants Fund Restoration at Jamestown WMA and Provide Match for NAWCA Grants
The PLJV ConocoPhillips grant program has supported habitat conservation for nearly 25 years, investing over $2.2 million into more than 260 projects around the PLJV region, with most of those projects providing habitat through traditional restoration or protection activities. Although ConocoPhillips grants are relatively small, $25,000 or less, they can provide greater value when used strategically within a broader plan.

Take a look at Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism (KDWPT), for example. Rob Unruh, manager of the Jamestown Wildlife Area, has applied for three PLJV ConocoPhillips grants to help fund discrete projects within Jamestown — and received funding each time. He has also been successful in leveraging those funds by using it as non-federal match for North American Wetland Conservation Act (NAWCA) grants. Read more. (more…)

Birding Community E-Bulletin – September 2014 7 September 2014

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The Birding Community E-bulletin is distributed to active and concerned birders, those dedicated to the joys of birding and the protection of birds and their habitats.
 
This issue is sponsored by the producers of superb quality birding binoculars and scopes, Carl Zeiss Sport Optics:
http://sportsoptics.zeiss.com/nature/en_us/home.html
 
RARITY FOCUS

On 2 August, Dan Jones, a Lower Rio Grande Valley birder, visited the Hargill Playa in Hidalgo County, Texas, located a few miles north-northeast of Edinburg. The idea was to scope out sandpipers and other birds, a few which might be significant for Hidalgo County. Jones was surprised to find what at first appeared to be a Wilson’s Plover, except that it looked odd: the bill seemed too narrow, it had a white forehead, and a black band ran across the head, extending from eye to eye. He had suspicions that the bird might be something else, took some photos, and then returned home to compare them with online photos.

His suspicions were correct. (more…)

6 September 2014 – 2 Wilson’s Warblers amidst a major fallout 6 September 2014

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Originally posted on Avian Window Kills:

Our first decent cold front of the summer came through last night just as the sun was going down, and this one brought some actual rain.  Thus, by about 9:00 pm, conditions were ripe for a major fallout of migrants as the ceiling lowered and the rain and storms moved in.  At time of writing, we’ve now had about 13 hours of steady rain. From Paul Hurtado’s radar ornithology page, these images show the impressive flight underway last night and the rain slicing through central Oklahoma that was forcing birds down.

Composite radar image from just after 9:00 pm last night.  Check out the impressive flight going on especially along the western shore of Lake Michigan.

Composite radar image from just after 9:00 pm last night. Check out the impressive flight going on especially west of Lake Michigan.

In this image from about 7:00 this morning, the rain hasn't really moved but the birds have put down for the day.

In this image from about 7:00 this morning, the rain hasn’t really moved but the birds have largely put down for the day.

While that rain was starting up last night, I heard…

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Sam Noble Museum – newsletter for September 2014 4 September 2014

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219

September 2014 Newsletter of the Sam Noble Museum of Natural History
News
Museum Welcomes Visitors to Bring in Objects
Many people find and collect objects that they recognize but can’t identify. Could it be a rock or a fossil? A piece of mammoth tusk or a mineral? All these questions and more can be answered during Science in Action & Object I.D. Day, a FREE, family-friendly, science-packed day of fun from 1 to 5 p.m. on Sunday, Sept. 28. Everything from bones and rocks to Native American objects and languages are brought in to the museum on this day for the experts to ponder over, identify and explain.   
 

Programs

Swaptember
Sept. 1-30
Show your membership card from any other the participating organizations to receive $5 off any listed organizations membership! Participating attractions include the Museum of Osteology, Myriad Gardens, National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum, OKC Museum of Art, OKC Zoo, Oklahoma Historical Society, Sam Noble Museum and Science Museum Oklahoma.

(more…)

The Wildlife Society multibrief 3 September 2014

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Manatees might not be endangered much longer, but have they really recovered well enough to warrant a reclassification under the ESA? To explore this, and other timely issues in wildlife conservation, check out the latest Multibrief newsletter from The Wildlife Society.

BirdWatch Ireland eWings #59 3 September 2014

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BIRDWATCH IRELAND eWINGS

Welcome to the August 2014 issue of eWings, BirdWatch Ireland’s email newsletter.

As a charity, BirdWatch Ireland relies on the public for support. A great new way to help us to carry out our vital conservation work is to sign up as an official Business Supporter of BirdWatch Ireland. It’s the perfect way for companies, partnerships and other businesses to provide financial and moral support for Ireland’s leading environmental NGO. At the same time, it provides a wide range of benefits for your business, your staff and your customers, and there may also be significant tax advantages.

We have just launched our new range of Business Supporter packages, which can be tailored to best suit the needs of your business, large or small. Whether you’re a CEO looking for a charity to partner with, or you work for a company which shares our concern for Ireland’s natural heritage, we would love to talk to you. For more information, please have a look at the new Business Supporter section on our website.

To view the articles and news in full simply click on the link displayed at the bottom of each article summary.

        

ARTICLES

    
    
Extract from Wings magazine: focus on Ireland’s Woodcocks

The Woodcock is one of Ireland’s most enigmatic and cherished waders, so the news that the species is now on the Red List of endangered birds in Ireland came as a shock to many. In an exclusive extract from the August 2014 edition of Wings, BirdWatch Ireland’s quarterly members’ magazine, Sinéad Cummins tells us more about this fascinating bird.

Don’t forget that the only way to receive Wings is to become a BirdWatch Ireland member.

Learn more about Ireland’s Woodcocks in Sinéad’s exclusive Wings article (PDF: 799KB)

    
Jellyfish on the increase in Irish waters?

Jellyfish are very interesting creatures indeed, and there have been many reports of unusally large numbers of them in Irish coastal waters this summer. Why might this be, and what might it be telling us about the health of our marine environment? Melanie Gomes, BirdWatch Ireland’s Marine and Fisheries Policy Officer, fills us in. (more…)

The Waterthrush Podcast #20: Little Martha 1 September 2014

Posted by Tim O'Connell in animal behavior, birding, birds/nature, Christmas Bird Count, deforestation, editorial, Endangered Species Act, environment, evolution, history, IUCN, Links, migrants, monarch butterfly, overpopulation, skepticism and science, The Waterthrush Podcast, wildlife.
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Today, 1 September 2014, is the centenary of the death of Martha, the very last Passenger Pigeon.  In an op-ed published today by the New York Times, executive director of the Cornell Lab of Ornithology John Fitzpatrick shares his thoughts to mark this sad occasion, and challenges us to recognize the other “passenger pigeons” disappearing before our eyes today. I read Fitzpatrick’s essay for the Waterthrush Podcast #20: Little Martha.

A Sad Centennial 1 September 2014

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Originally posted on Vermont Center for Ecostudies:

Passenger Pigeon

Passenger Pigeon

A sad 100th anniversary tomorrow. On September 1, 1914, the last passenger pigeon in the world, Martha, died in the Cincinnati Zoo; her death cemented the extinction of the passenger pigeon species, whose population numbers were once in the billions.

“The number of pigeons [at Clarendon, Vt.] was immense . . . For an hundred acres together, the ground was covered with their dung, to the dept of two inches. Their noise in the evening was extremely troublesome, and so great that the traveler could not get any sleep, where their nests were thick. About two hours after sunrise, they rose in such numbers as to darken the air.”
-William Samuel, The Natural and Civil History of Vermont, 1794.

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After 90 Percent Decline, Federal Protection Sought for Monarch Butterfly 28 August 2014

Posted by Tim O'Connell in birds/nature, editorial, Endangered Species Act, environment, evolution, IUCN, life, Links, migrants, monarch butterfly, weather, wildlife.
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Tim O'Connell:

Thanks to K. P. McFarland for this important post from 26 Aug. 2014.  I have been following this story for years, but even I was surprised to learn that things had gotten so grave so quickly.

 

Originally posted on Vermont Center for Ecostudies:

MonarchsWASHINGTON— The Center for Biological Diversity and Center for Food Safety as co-lead petitioners joined by the Xerces Society and renowned monarch scientist Dr. Lincoln Brower filed a legal petition today to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service seeking Endangered Species Act protection for monarch butterflies, which have declined by more than 90 percent in under 20 years. During the same period it is estimated that these once-common iconic orange and black butterflies may have lost more than 165 million acres of habitat — an area about the size of Texas — including nearly a third of their summer breeding grounds.

“Monarchs are in a deadly free fall and the threats they face are now so large in scale that Endangered Species Act protection is needed sooner rather than later, while there is still time to reverse the severe decline in the heart of their range,” said Lincoln Brower, preeminent…

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500 Million Records – eBird! 25 August 2014

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Among several other cool announcements in the latest eBird News newsletter is this piece:  eBird has now surpassed 500 million records in its database.

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Ornithological Newsletter – August 2014 17 August 2014

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ORNITHOLOGICAL NEWSLETTER

LATE-BREAKING NEWS (NOT INCLUDED IN THE NEWSLETTER)
WORKSHOP FOR STUDENTS AND POSTDOCS AT AOU/COS/SCO MEETING

A lunchtime workshop “From Thesis Chapter to Published Article” is being given on Wednesday, September 24, by The Auk and The Condor Editors-in-Chief, at the AOU/COS/SCO 2014 Joint Meeting. Sign up through the meeting’s registration website to reserve a lunchtime space for this free workshop. Deadline for registration is 18 August. If you are unable to register on the meeting website, contact the COPO office (aoucospubs@gmail.com) by 18August.

As the editors-in-chief of the newly renamed society journals, Mark Hauber (Editor-in-chief of The Auk: Ornithological Advances) and Phil Stouffer (Editor-in-chief of The Condor: Ornithological Applications) are excited to lead this workshop/discussion forum and share their experiences and recommendations about the publication process. This workshop is aimed at young investigators (graduate students and postdocs), focusing on a successful strategy to prepare manuscripts for submission and working through the review/revision process. You need bring only your curiosity and questions.

AOU/COS/SCO 2014 AT ESTES PARK, COLORADO

The AOU-COS-SCO 2014 meeting is less than two months away, scheduled for September 23-27 at the YMCA of the Rockies. The housing deadline has been extended to 22 August by the YMCA. Complete details for guest rooms and meals are available online via https://www.birdmeetings.org/aoucossco2014/accommodations.asp .

Early mornings and evenings provide time to enjoy the natural environment offered at YMCA of the Rockies. The program agenda and schedule of all events are available online, http://www.birdmeetings.org/aoucossco2014/schedule.asp . (more…)

Cornell Lab eNews, Aug. 2014 14 August 2014

Posted by Tim O'Connell in birding, birds/nature, editorial, Endangered Species Act, environment.
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Check out the Merlin birding app, the new mural in progress at the Lab, and much more.

Cornell Lab eNews, Aug. 2014

 

August 2014

Answer Five Quick Questions and Find Out Which Bird You Saw

Merlin Bird ID—available for iOS devices and just released for Android—is a revolutionary new app for identifying common birds of North America. What’s so revolutionary?
It asks you five simple questions about the bird you saw and then gives you a short list of the most likely possibilities
That short list is a smart list—Merlin uses data from our eBird project to tell you which birds are most likely to be seen near you, right now
It’s loaded with 2,000 top-quality photos and 1,000 songs and calls to help you confirm your ID
It’s completely free (more…)

ODWC moves prairie dogs from one Canton to another 14 August 2014

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August 14, 2014
A Service of the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation
 
PRAIRIE DOG TOWN ESTABLISHED ON WILDLIFE MANAGEMENT AREA

Rangers with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers use a mixture of soap and pressurized water to flush black-tailed prairie dogs from a burrow near Canton Lake. Photo by Jena Donnell.
Biologists with the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers recently partnered to reintroduce black-tailed prairie dogs to Canton Wildlife Management Area in northwestern Oklahoma. With this partnership, an ecologically important species has been re-established on a management area and prairie dog expansion in the developed area of Canton Lake has been curtailed.
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A total of 45 prairie dogs have been relocated from the southwestern side of Canton Lake near the Canadian Campground area to the management area; 22 were moved in 2013 and 23 in 2014. The colonial rodents have not only expanded into Canadian Campground, but also west of the campground where many mobile homes were demolished during the 2011 EF3 tornado. This area is set for redevelopment later this year. Black-tailed prairie dogs have only been removed from the recently expanded portion of the colony; the Corps will continue conservation efforts for the core colony.
 
To capture black-tailed prairie dogs, a mixture of soap and water is sprayed into the burrows and the prairie dogs are flushed to the surface. The soapy mixture prevents the burrows from flooding and drives the prairie dogs to the top of the burrow. When the rodents surface, they are captured, rinsed off and put in large wire cages filled with hay for transportation. The cages are later opened and staked over artificial burrows dug on the WMA. The prairie dogs will complete the burrow system on their own. This capture technique was developed in 1969 and has been used during several relocation efforts.  

Black-tailed prairie dogs are social rodents that live in colonies better known as towns. Photo by Kaitlin Taylor.
 
Prairie dogs are social, squirrel-like rodents, living in large colonies or “towns” as family groups. The smallest social unit consists of at least one male, several females and their young. But prairie dogs aren’t the only species of wildlife that use the towns. Multiple research projects conducted in Oklahoma’s black-tailed prairie dog towns have revealed seven species of amphibians, 10 species of reptiles, 56 species of birds and 18 other species of mammals use the burrow systems or graze on the short grass within the town.
 
Wildlife Department biologists hope the re-establishment of black-tailed prairie dogs on Canton Wildlife Management Area will increase the overall biodiversity on the management area and create habitat for a multitude of other species.

 
The mission of the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation is the management of Oklahoma’s wildlife resources and habitat to provide scientific, educational, aesthetic, economic and recreational benefits for present and future generations of hunters, anglers and others who appreciate wildlife.
News Contacts: Jena Donnell or Micah Holmes.
Website: http://www.wildlifedepartment.com
Telephone: (405) 496-0350

 
This program receives federal assistance from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and thus prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, disability, age, and sex (gender), pursuant to Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (as amended), Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, the Age Discrimination Act of 1975, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, and Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990. To request an accommodation or informational material in an alternative format, please contact the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation by calling (405) 521-3855. If you believe you have been discriminated against in any program, activity, or service, please contact U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration Program, Attention: Civil Rights Coordinator for Public Access, 4401 N. Fairfax Drive, Arlington, VA 22203.
 

ProAves meets with indigenous community leaders to grow trees in Colombia 13 August 2014

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From Aleteo 123, check out how ProAVes has partnered with other groups to help indigenous people develop seedling nurseries for desired native trees in Colombia. collage_taller

Flight Calls #111: Birding July/August 2014 – sneak peak! 11 August 2014

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July/August 2014 Birding: Sneak Preview

The May/June issue is an interactive multi-media experience! With this issue of Birding, you can hear nuthatch calls, discuss bird ID online, and even fold your own Passenger Pigeon.

Click here for Birding Online, your one-stop guide to all the online content in this issue of Birding.

We’ve gone to press! You should be receiving the July/August Birding soon. But if you just can’t wait, a sneak peak of the cover is at left (a larger version here) and the table of contents is here.

We’re delighted that we were deluged this issue with ABA members’ milestones—highlighted by quite a number of photos. You can seen an advance e-version of “Milestones” right here.

We’re also pleased by coverage in this issue of an exciting new initiative for the ABA. See ABA President Jeffrey A. Gordon’s thoughts about the federal Duck Stamp—and how U.S. birders can support conservation and promote birding by buying a Duck Stamp through the ABA right here.

Several items of online content have already been available for a while. But in case you missed that announcement, here it is again. First off, book reviews. Click here for Gavin Bieber’s review of Birdfinding in British Columbia (by Russell Cannings and Richard Cannings, Greystone Books); click here for Graham Etherington’s review of Rare Birds of North America (Steve Howell and coauthors, Princeton University Press); and click here for Chelsea Biondolillo’s review of America’s Other Audubon (Joy M. Kiser, Princeton Architectural Press).

Also, the July/August “Featured Photo”—but not yet Tom Johnson’s answer and analysis—has been posted to The ABA Blog. Have a look at the image and feel free to add your voice to the discussion and speculation.

May/June 2014 Birding: Online content
The May/June issue is an interactive multi-media experience! With this issue of Birding, you can hear nuthatch calls, discuss bird ID online, and even fold your own Passenger Pigeon.

Click here for Birding Online, your one-stop guide to all the online content in this issue of Birding.

American Birding Association, Inc.
1618 W. Colorado Ave, Colorado Springs, CO 80904
Phone: (800) 850-2473 | Fax: (719) 578-1480 | Email: lgordon@aba.org
Copyright © American Birding Association, Inc.. All Rights Reserved

ODWC Quail Symposium Aug. 23rd 11 August 2014

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QUAIL SYMPOSIUM, FUNDRAISING BANQUET SET FOR AUG. 23
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Landowners, conservationists and sportsmen will get the chance to hear the latest information about bobwhite quail as the Central Oklahoma 89er Chapter of Quail Forever presents an Oklahoma Quail Symposium on Aug. 23.
The daylong symposium will begin with registration at 9:30 a.m. and close at 2:30 p.m. It will be followed at 5:30 p.m. by the organization’s ninth annual fundraising banquet. All events will take place at the Crowne Plaza hotel, near Northwest Expressway at May Avenue in Oklahoma City.
Experts from the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation will join others from Oklahoma State University, the National Resource Conservation Service and Texas Parks and Wildlife Department to speak on various topics during the symposium.
“It’s important to preserve our quail hunting traditions for future generations,” said Laura McIver, 89er Chapter president. “Attending our fundraiser banquet helps all of us to achieve our quail habitat conservation goals and restore our grand heritage for our kids and grandkids.”
Scheduled symposium topics include:
“Quail Mythology,” Robert Perez, Texas Parks and Wildlife.
“Grants and Monies Available for Better Habitat,” Mike Sams, NRCS.
“The Good, the Bad and the Ugly: Identifying Native Grasses and Forbs,” Scott Cox, upland game senior biologist for the Wildlife Department.
“Feathers and Fire: Improving and Managing Quail Habitat with Prescribed Burning,” John Weir, OSU.
“How the Wildlife Department is Managing WMA Lands to Benefit Quail,” Scott Parry, biologist for the Wildlife Department.
“Coveys and Cattle: Using Land to Produce Both Beef and Bobwhites,” Dwayne Elmore, Oklahoma Cooperative Extension Service wildlife specialist.
“Update on Quail Research,” Matt Carroll, OSU research assistant.
The dinner banquet will feature prizes, auctions and entertainment.
Each symposium ticket is $20, which includes lunch. Tickets for the dinner banquet are $60, which includes membership in Quail Forever. Tickets for a spouse or non-member dinner are $30. There is a special price of $70 for those wishing to attend both the symposium and the banquet. Banquet sponsorship opportunities are also available.
To register for either event, call (405) 415-5724 or go online to centralokquailforever.org or send e-mail to info@centralokquailforever.org.

–30–

The mission of the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation is the management of Oklahoma’s wildlife resources and habitat to provide scientific, educational, aesthetic, economic and recreational benefits for present and future generations of hunters, anglers and others who appreciate wildlife.
News Contacts: Don P. Brown or Micah Holmes.
Website: http://www.wildlifedepartment.com
Telephone: (405) 521-4632

Birdwatch Ireland eWings, #58 11 August 2014

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BIRDWATCH IRELAND eWINGS

Welcome to the July 2014 issue of eWings, BirdWatch Ireland’s email newsletter.

Do you fancy a relaxing break on a West Cork island and a chance to learn about bird migration, seabirds and lots more? The beautiful island of Cape Clear lies 8 miles off Baltimore and has long been recognised as a key site for observing bird migration and the passage of thousands of seabirds each autumn. BirdWatch Ireland’s Cape Clear Bird Observatory was founded in 1959 and has been in operation ever since. For the last fifteen years, Dick Coombes has been running birdwatching courses on Cape, centred around the observatory. These courses always prove popular and our next one, entitled “Songbirds to Seabirds” will be held from Monday 8th to Friday 12th September.

The course is designed to have something for everyone, catering for all levels of experience. Each day will feature indoor lectures and walks around the island in a relaxed but informative atmosphere. The main topics covered will be bird identification, seawatching, breeding seabirds, methods of tracking bird movements, migration and weather. This year, as the Bird Observatory is temporarily closed due to construction work at the harbour, the course will instead be held in the Youth Hostel on the shore of the scenic South Harbour. For more information or to make a booking, simply click here, or call us on 01-2819878.

To view the articles and news in full simply click on the link displayed at the bottom of each article summary.

ARTICLES
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What are these odd orange-headed birds we’ve been seeing lately?

Over the past few weeks we’ve been receiving lots of phone calls and emails here at BirdWatch Ireland about strange birds with bright orange heads that have been visiting gardens. They tend to flock with Starlings and House Sparrows and can be quite numerous in some areas, though they can’t be found in any field guides. This is something that we at BirdWatch Ireland have become used to at this time of year, but this summer the number of reports we’ve had has been absolutely unprecedented. So, what’s going on? (Photo: unusual orange-headed bird by Brendan Fitzpatrick)

Read more about these unusual-looking birds and discover their true identity!

(more…)

The Nature Conservancy – Great Places Vol. 14, Issue 8 6 August 2014

Posted by Tim O'Connell in animal behavior, birds/nature, editorial, Endangered Species Act, environment, evolution, IUCN, life, Links, wildlife.
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Stop what you’re doing and look at this photo. Look at it. This is not a creature that we can allow to fade into oblivion. It’s simply too cute for us to let that happen.
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Did you look? Okay good. You probably want to learn more about the Pygmy Rabbit now, and the struggles it faces in the sagebrush of the American West. You might also want to learn how The Nature Conservancy is working to help these little rabbits, and all the other associated native plants and animals of the sage. To do that, check out the August edition of Great Places, Vol. 14, Issue 8.

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