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BirdWatch Ireland eWings 10 November 2014

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BIRDWATCH IRELAND eWINGS

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

It’s late October, so I suppose it’s not too early to ask – have you bought your Christmas cards yet? BirdWatch Ireland’s new “Robin in Snow” card might be just what you’re looking for: a pack of 10 costs €5.00. We also have packs of our smaller-sized “Frost and Snow” range of cards in stock: a pack of 12 cards costs €5.00. Best of all, by buying your cards from BirdWatch Ireland you’ll be helping to support our vital conservation work.

Also hot off the presses is the new 2015 BirdWatch Ireland Calendar. Featuring superb images from some of Ireland’s finest wildlife photographers, it makes the perfect gift for the nature-lovers in your life.

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

ARTICLES

Bird Atlas team scoops RSPB’s most prestigious award

The RSPB Medal, the Society’s most prestigious award, recognising outstanding contribution to the cause of wild bird protection and countryside conservation, has been awarded to the team behind the Bird Atlas 2007-11, including BirdWatch Ireland’s own Brian Caffrey (pictured left, with RSPB President Miranda Krestovnikoff). The award recognises the very special partnership between the British Trust for Ornithology, BirdWatch Ireland and the Scottish Ornithologists’ Club which led to the publication of this landmark book. If you have yet to purchase it, copies of Bird Atlas 2007-11 are still available from the BirdWatch Ireland online shop: don’t miss out!

Read more about the award of the RSPB Medal to the Bird Atlas 2007-11 team

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Birding Community E-Bulletin – November 2014 10 November 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

You can access an archive of past E-bulletins on the website of the National Wildlife Refuge Association (NWRA):

http://refugeassociation.org/news/birding-bulletin/

RARITY FOCUS

Interesting things began to happen in the Florida Keys on Saturday afternoon, 25 October, when Bill and Nancy Framboise reported a Bahama Swallow at Long Key State Park. Birders in the area were soon put on the alert, and the next day hawkwatchers at Curry Hammock State Park, 11 miles southwest of Long Key, were also rewarded. At least three Bahama Swallows were observed from the hawkwatch deck that afternoon, where the birds were seen accompanying other swallow species, including Barn, Northern Rough-winged, and Cliff Swallows. The Bahama Swallows foraged in the vicinity of the hawkwatch site for at least two hours. On the same day, still another Bahama Swallow was observed and photographed at Bill Baggs State Park on Key Biscayne, near Miami.

The Bahama Swallow is endemic to the Bahamas, especially on Andros, Abaco, and Grand Bahama. (Some Bahama Swallows may also winter in eastern Cuba.) The species is considered a very rare visitor to South Florida, with less than 10 documented records prior to these observations last month. All previous records occurred before 1993. The experience last month may have been associated with a tropical depression brewing in the Gulf of Mexico from 20-24 October.
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Cornell Lab eNews for November 2014 10 November 2014

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There is lots of great birding to be had in November.   The latest edition of the Cornell Lab eNewsletter will get you excited to get out there and see for yourself.

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Waterthrush Podcast #22 – The Legend of Sleepy Hollow 26 October 2014

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Just in time for Halloween 2014, I hope you’ll enjoy my reading of the complete American masterpiece by Washington Irving: The Legend of Sleepy Hollow.

Ornithological Newsletter #222 18 October 2014

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Here’s the latest Ornithological Newsletter, published by the Ornithological Societies of North America.

Aleteo #126: Colombian Conservation from ProAves 18 October 2014

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Check out the latest in Colombian Conservation from ProAves.  I never cease to be impressed by the great work these people are doing to conserve biodiversity in one of the earth’s great hot spots.  For example, they just added nearly 500 acres to a preserve that highlights protection of the Blue-billed Curassow.

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Also check out this artwork from some happy schoolkids working to develop a conservation ethic for our global biodiversity:  “Deforestacion:  !!!No!!!”  Love it!

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BirdBlitz! Counting Birds to Save Birds in Ecuador 18 October 2014

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Tim O'Connell:

BioBlitz Ecuador – going on now!

Originally posted on American Bird Conservancy Blog:

Esmeraldas Woodstar feeding at Ayampe Reserve. Photo by Francisco Sornoza

Esmeraldas Woodstar feeding at Ayampe Reserve. Photo by Francisco Sornoza

By Benjamin Skolnik

To celebrate the astonishing bird diversity harbored at Jocotoco Foundation’s reserves, I’m participating in the first “BioBlitz” to be held in Latin America: a “BirdBlitz” to document bird diversity.

Over the course of two 24-hour periods between Oct. 15 and Oct. 22, we will be documenting all the birds we can observe at Jocotoco reserves across Ecuador. The country is home to over 1,500 species of birds, and we hope to see over 500.

Benjamin Skolnik explains why supporting Fundación Jocotoco during the 2014 BirdBlitz is important for bird conservation in Ecuador.

In just the past year, American Bird Conservancy, Jocotoco and other partners added thousands of acres to the Antisanilla Reserve, Narupa Reserve, and Río Canande Reserve. Jocotoco now operates 10 reserves throughout Ecuador, protecting over 50 endangered and threatened birds along…

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Bird Cams eNews, Cornell Lab of Ornithology 18 October 2014

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With the proliferation of live webcams of animal behavior in real time, the Cornell Lab of Ornithology has consolidated updates for several popular ones.  I really enjoy that Ontario FeederWatch Cam, for its Ruffed Grouse and northern finchy things.  Here are some Evening Grosbeaks from Wednesday afternoon:

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Great stuff!  I suppose I should rig one of these up so the good folks in Ontario can see all our southern specialties here at my feeders.

Center for Conservation Biology – eNewsletter for late summer 2014 6 October 2014

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The latest newsletter is out from the Center for Conservation Biology, a joint project of the College of William and Mary and Virginia Commonwealth University.

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CONSERVATION STORIES

Echoes of the Dough Birds

Like a summer carnival coming to a Midwestern town, wherever Eskimo Curlew went their arrival was the most anticipated event of the year. They were travelers along the Great Circle. From breeding grounds around the Mackenzie River they flew east to the Canadian Maritimes before making a nonstop flight to South America. Incredible numbers wintered on the campos around Bahia Blanca south of Buenos Aires. In the spring they flew north to…. Read more…
CCB NEWS

National Eagle Roost Registry launched

Non-breeding bald eagles are extremely social and frequently roost together near rich food resources. Communal roosts may be ephemeral congregations of birds that form to exploit short-lived food resources or may be used for decades. Roosts may be used by hundreds of birds or just two or three depending on the circumstances and the surrounding landscape structure. Because communal roosts play an important role in the life cycle of bald… Read more…

The Blueberry Birds of Acadia

Over the songs of Swainson’s thrush and white-throated sparrows come the soothing calls of approaching whimbrels. Soon 24 birds in formation appear over the tree line and begin a wide circle over the blueberry field. As they approach the northeast corner of the field, two shots of screamer shells explode from a black truck, leaving white trails of smoke arcing toward the flock. The flock whirls east, rising higher and picking up speed… Read more… (more…)

Handbook of the Birds of the World – newsletter #5 5 October 2014

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HBW Alive, #5, is now live!

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In addition to the spectacular Scarlet-belted Barbet, you can learn about the influence of neonicotinoids on birds, read about the newly described Cryptic Treehunter, watch video of the Yellow-tailed Black-Cockatoo, and much more.

American Ornithologists’ Union – Presidential Report 5 October 2014

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PRESIDENTIAL-REPORT-2014

Birding Community E-Bulletin for October 2014 5 October 2014

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129

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

You can access an archive of past E-bulletins on the website of the National Wildlife Refuge Association (NWRA):

http://refugeassociation.org/news/birding-bulletin/

RARITY FOCUS

On Friday, 12 September a Whiskered Tern was found at Bunker Pond in Cape May, New Jersey. The tern was initially associating with a Black Tern, and was first reported by Louise Zemaitis and Alec Humann. Bunker Pond is a body of water at Cape May Point State Park that the famous hawk-watch platform overlooks.

The Whiskered Tern is a widespread Old World species. In North America however, there are only two previous records, both on the NE Atlantic Coast and, surprisingly, both with Cape May connections. One of the previous records involved a bird that was at Cape May for a few days in July, 1993, before it moved to Little Creek, Delaware, where it stayed for over a month. The other Whiskered Tern occurrence was a bird at Cape May for a few days in August, 1998.

Last month’s Whiskered Tern at Cape May often moved back and forth between Bunker Pond and the nearby beach, where it often roosted with Common Terns, Forster’s Terns, and Laughing Gulls. After the first weekend of observations, it also began to be seen near the Coral Avenue jetty and the jetty behind the St. Mary by-the-Sea Retreat Center.

Hundreds of birders came to see the tern through 20 September, which was the final day that the Whiskered Tern was observed.

For a good report from the Atlantic City press, see here:
http://www.pressofatlanticcity.com/news/breaking/off-course-whiskered-tern-has-excited-birders-heading-to-cape/article_435b8692-3d1b-11e4-a8e5-ff409b496649.html

And for a unique video by Andy McGann, see here:

THE PROBLEM OF LUCISTIC SANDHILL CRANES

In July of last year, researchers with the Wisconsin-based International Crane Foundation (ICF) found a dead radio-tagged Whooping Crane in a Waupaca County wheat field. The bird had been shot. Matthew Kent Larsen, 28, of New London pleaded guilty in federal court in Green Bay for violating the Migratory Bird Treaty Act (MBTA) by killing a protected species. Larsen told authorities he shot the crane because he thought it was an albino Sandhill Crane. Of course, Whooping Cranes are white and Sandhill Cranes are normally gray or reddish brown. Neither bird is legal to be hunted in Wisconsin. You can read more about this issue from the USFWS, a summary of which was released this past summer here:
http://www.fws.gov/midwest/news/730.html
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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.

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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…)

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