The Falcon Thief: A Book Review

10,000 Birds

It didn’t occur to me till I started reading The Falcon Thief: A True Tale of Adventure, Treachery, and the Hunt for the Perfect Bird that there was also a possible threat to the eagle herself: poachers, who steal raptor eggs and chicks. The Falcon Thief has come along at a good time.

Listening to Falcons: The Peregrines of Tom Cade

10,000 Birds

That summer of 1938, when he was ten years old, Cade read of two brothers, Frank and John Craighead, who wrote of their experiences with falcons in National Geographic. I knew no falconers. ” Falcons could be taken from the nest just before they were able to fly or caught wild after maturity. Except for the falconer’s jesses and bell, they were to be allowed freedom to pursue life in the wild, life with minimal human contact.

2019 54

Backyard Birdfeeder Bragging Rights, a Great Adventure for a Great Twitch, and More: This Week in Birding News

10,000 Birds

Let us no more speak of this week’s extraordinary failure by a cast of Falcons to finish off their prey. If you’re a cuckoo or cowbird hoping to pawn off your parenting duties on another species, new brood parasitism research shows you’ll have better luck if the eggs you deposit in their nest are blue-green instead of brown. contemplating the pretty blue eggs are American Robins are soon to lay is a good coping strategy.).

2017 40

Move, Birds, Get Out the Way!

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It’s got climbers grousing about Peregrine Falcons … … and beach towns coming up with creative solutions for wall-to-wall Purple Martins. Even music festivals are getting into the act, relocating a Killdeer nest so that the show can go on with no harm to the mama and eggs. Birds Conservation Killdeer nesting birds Peregrine Falcon Purple Martins Rosy Starling

2018 40

De arte venandi cum avibus: San Martino Siir (2015) – Aglianico del Vulture DOC

10,000 Birds

So, in writing his own falconry treatise, Frederick drew on all sources of knowledge on birds available to him at the time, including the Aristotelian tradition inherited from antiquity, medieval bestiaries imbued with preordained Christian morality and symbolism rather than the careful observation of natural phenomena, as well as translations of later, more enlightened works by Arab falconers and scholars.

2019 43

Striding Snake-killers

10,000 Birds

The quills of the “Saqu Ettair” Secretarybirds feed on small lizards, insects, rodents, birds eggs and, of course, snakes. Birding Botswana eagles falcons raptors secretarybird Worldwide Birding AdventuresThere is no raptor quite so removed from the typical confines of what a bird of prey should look and behave like.

2012 65

Third Cable Beach Pied Oystercatcher nest to hatch

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We had been patiently awaiting the arrival of the two chicks since the eggs were laid a month ago. I took a few photos of the chick that had hatched out and the remaining egg. The egg had a clear hole in the upper right where the egg tooth was breaking through the shell.

2020 59

Into the Nest: A Book Review in the Time of Nesting

10,000 Birds

And of eggs and nests and birds on nests. Peregrine Falcon nests. Into the Nest , as the title says, is about the courting, mating, egg-laying, nesting, and parenting behavior of “familiar birds”. Cedar Waxwings exchange berries, carry nesting material, eggs. Egg biology, from Part I. Each species chapter describes how the bird finds mates, creates nests, lays eggs, feeds nestlings, and other parenting behaviors. And another when that egg is removed.

2015 83

Camping by the Fitzroy River

10,000 Birds

We moved in slowly and soon observed that there was a well camouflaged nest with one egg in it. Black-fronted Dotterel nest with one egg. If you look at this header photo and then the header photo of our first camping trip in 2020 you will notice it is somewhat similar.

2020 57

An Osprey Moment of Truth

10,000 Birds

Now we gamble again (literally as well as figuratively – there’s a split-pot prize for predicting the dates of arrival, egg-laying, and other major events) on the hope that they will lay viable eggs and successfully rear young. The Ospreys have returned to Dunrovin. It’s a gamble every year, of course.

2014 56

Quoth the Ravens: We’re Ready for Our Close-up

10,000 Birds

There are hawk cams , falcon cams , puffin cams , tern cams , heron cams , and even Osprey cams. Why else would they build their nest, which already contains two eggs, on the fire escape of the college’s science center? You’ve probably heard of many different kinds of bird cams—web feeds that spy on the inner lives of birds. Now you can add another one to the list: the Ravencam, in the unlikeliest of places—the campus of Wellesley College , just outside of Boston, Massachusetts.

2014 60

The first Pied Oystercatcher chicks of 2018

10,000 Birds

Two weeks ago I introduced you to two pairs of our Pied Oystercatchers that were early egg layers this year and this week the eggs have hatched out after twenty eight days of incubation. Both pairs of Pied Oystercatchers are in a very public area of Cable Beach, but they are always successful with their egg incubation each year. There are several birds of prey in the area including Black Kites and Brown Falcons.

2018 40

Urban Renewal: Is It Safer for Songbirds in the City?

10,000 Birds

Birds like cuckoos, who lay their eggs in songbirds’ nests, and whose young then off the hosts’ own chicks, tend to avoid cities. This part of the theory doesn’t entirely jibe with the growing numbers of, say, Peregrine Falcons that make skyscrapers and urban bridges their home, but it’s interesting to contemplate nonetheless. That’s what a group of researchers suggest in a paper recently published in Behavioral Ecology.

2016 40

Collaborative list – June 2019

10,000 Birds

Jamaica Bay, Big Egg Marsh. Jamaica Bay, Big Egg Marsh. Jamaica Bay, Big Egg Marsh. Jamaica Bay, Big Egg Marsh. Jamaica Bay, Big Egg Marsh. Jamaica Bay, Big Egg Marsh. Jamaica Bay, Big Egg Marsh. Jamaica Bay, Big Egg Marsh. Jamaica Bay, Big Egg Marsh. Jamaica Bay, Big Egg Marsh. Jamaica Bay, Big Egg Marsh. Jamaica Bay, Big Egg Marsh. Jamaica Bay, Big Egg Marsh. Jamaica Bay, Big Egg Marsh.

2019 44

Cavity Nesting Birds of North America and Their Babies!

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Wood Duck ( Aix sponsa ) Female Incubating Eggs in a Nest Box “Many species of cavity-nesting birds have declined because of habitat reduction. The hole-nesting population of peregrine falcons disappeared with the felling of the giant trees upon which they depended. This is the female incubating eggs in the nest box… and a couple of weeks later… then, at the ripe old age of 17 days, what’s going on out here?

California Quail, The California State Bird: Now Forming Coveys

10,000 Birds

In California, coveys break up and pairs begin forming in February or March, followed by nest building and egg laying in May or June. She will usually lay 12 to 17 eggs, averaging five per week 1 , before beginning incubation. Occasionally, larger clutches occur due to egg dumping by other females. 2005), Nests, Eggs, and Nestlings of North American Birds , Princeton: Princeton University Press 2 Birds of North America Online a.

Greenland’s Arctic Tern

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When their nests are ready the birds lay two eggs, and in rare occasions only one or three. The eggs are hatched in 21 days and even though the chicks leave the nest after a couple of days, they remain close to their place of birth. Due to their great protectiveness against dangers such as gulls, arctic skuas, ravens, falcons, foxes and humans, a lot of other bird species reside just outside the Arctic terns colonies.

2014 59

The “Rufa” Red Knot is now protected under the Endangered Species Act

10,000 Birds

For example, in the Delaware Bay, warming coastal waters can cause horseshoe crabs to lay their eggs earlier than normal; conversely, more intense and frequent coastal storms can cause late spawning. In both cases, knots, which feed on the crabs’ eggs, can miss their peak refueling opportunity. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has listed the “Rufa” population of Red Knot ( Calidris canutus rufa ) as a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act (ESA).

Critically Endangered: Sociable Lapwing

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Reasons for their decline include steppes being turned into arable fields – the reason they disappeared from Ukraine and European Russia, on migration they are hunted with guns and falcons, and on their wintering grounds natural habitat is dwindling in the absence of once large herds of wild ungulates (one should try to see these animals as gardeners of a well-kept landscape). Gujarat, December 2010. Target for today: critically endangered Sociable Lapwing ( Vanellus gregarius ).

2014 72

Wildlife Rehabilitator Slang

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Some abbreviations roll off your tongue and are thus quite helpful – Mourning Doves are MODOs, Peregrine Falcons are PEFAs, Mississippi Kites are MIKIs. Maureen Eiger categorizes any unidentifiable featherless nestlings as “ Tufted Puffins ;” to Letitia Labbie, they’re “Eggs With Legs.”. Slang, code, and abbreviations: linguistic shorthand which can make speakers (and writers) incomprehensible to those outside their own group.

Comebackers

10,000 Birds

North American Peregrine Falcons have also enjoyed an impressive population rebound in recent years. The most notorious effect is that their eggshells become so thin that a parent bird will crush it’s eggs while attempting to incubate them. Raptors and other predatory birds have largely rebounded, and there seems to be be no shortage of Brown Pelicans, Peregrine Falcons and Bald Eagles. If you ask this Great Ornithologist, extinction is an extremely depressing issue.

2014 62

Rufous Treecreepers

10,000 Birds

According to this website the Rufous Treecreeper lays two or three light purple eggs and only the female bird incubates the eggs. At the top of Devil’s Slide we had a close encounter with a pair of Peregrine Falcons and there were also a pair of Wedge-tailed Eagles soaring over the National Park.

2018 40

Do Not Feed Baby Birds Ham

10,000 Birds

And scrambled eggs,” added Hilary Lewis. “I I had a finder bring me a bird he’d correctly ID’d as a merlin – a not-too-common falcon – but when he brought him in, I could see he’d been trying to feed it BIRD SEED!” Wildlife rehabilitators are a multi-tasking lot. Not only do we take care of zillions of injured and orphaned birds/mammals/reptiles/whatever, we also have to deal with and educate the public. The baffling, mind-boggling public.

2015 80

Summer Books for Kids (and the rest of us)

10,000 Birds

They cut down the trees the parrots used for nesting and brought black rats, who ate their eggs, and honeybees who swarmed into their nests, and by 1937 there were only about 2,000 Puerto Rican Parrots left. They start out in New York City, climbing a skyscraper to see a Peregrine Falcon, the world’s fastest-moving bird, diving at almost 200 miles an hour after a pigeon.

2014 68

A “lifer” in our local patch

10,000 Birds

We discovered another juvenile not far away, so other species have had their eggs swapped out. Firstly I almost stood on a Buff-banded Rail and we were both in shock, but it was in even more shock when a Brown Falcon almost took it out of the sky. Last Sunday was Grant’s birthday and we decided to bird our local area in search of something special. We drove out of town a bit, as we had not seen Black-tailed Treecreepers yet this year and wanted to!

2011 53

At Sea With the Marine Birds of the Raincoast: A Book Review

10,000 Birds

The relationship between the marine birds and the Northwest indigenous cultures also has a place in the natural histories, from the Heiltsuk man Fox encounters harvesting Glaucous-winged Gull eggs (early enough to allow the gulls to breed again), to an elder’s description of the Haida rituals welcoming Ancient Murrelets back to the islands, where they are celebrated and subsequently eaten.

2016 40

Weavers

10,000 Birds

African Harrier-Hawks, snakes and other predators frequently raid weaver colonies to rob the nests of eggs and chicks. The undersides of these nests are dotted with entrance holes leading to breeding chambers used not only by their engineers the Sociable Weavers, but also Rosy-faced Lovebirds, Acacia Pied Barbets, Red-headed Finches and Pygmy Falcons, even concurrently!

2012 66

Where to See Kiwi (and other birds) During the Rugby World Cup

10,000 Birds

The Centre takes kiwi eggs from the wild, when they are vulnerable to introduced predators, and rears them until they are old enough to survive in the wild. The sanctuary has a population of Little Spotted Kiwi, as well as a range of other rare species such as Takahe , Stichbirds , New Zealand Falcons , Brown Teal and Red-crowned Parakeets. If there is one thing that Kiwis care about, it’s birds. No, wait, not birds. Rugby. Kiwis care about rugby. A lot.

2011 55

Phillipps’ Field Guide to the Birds of Borneo: A Book Review

10,000 Birds

The uniformity of the lines of some of the more standardized plates are interrupted by behavior and botanical images–a Mountain Leaf-warbler feeding a juvenile Sunda Cuckoo; nutmeg seeds dispersed by Pied Imperial Pigeons and eaten by Nicobar Pigeons, a rare nomad; Dung Beetles rolling a ball of dung (the beetles will lay eggs into the dung which will produce larvae which will be a food source for Wren-Babblers).

2014 58

Collaborative List – July 2018

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Aplomado Falcon – Falco femoralis. Jamaica Bay, Big Egg Marsh. Jamaica Bay, Big Egg Marsh. Jamaica Bay, Big Egg Marsh. Jamaica Bay, Big Egg Marsh. And so to summer. Traditionally, the slow season, but the beats have mopped their collective brow and outdone their previous efforts. The UK has been birded clean by Tom as he ends his Little Big Year (Part 1).

2018 40

Clare M’s 2015 Year List

10,000 Birds

The adult Pied Oystercatchers were still at their non-breeding site at Gantheaume Point and will no doubt lay their first eggs for 2015 in the first week of July. Brown Falcon - Falco berigora- Broome, January 1st. Well, a New Year has arrived and of course that means a new list for birds! We had not done “year lists” until we started here in 2012 , because a few other Beat Writers had decided to and really…why not!

2015 58

Collaborative list – December 2018

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Jamaica Bay, Big Egg Marsh. So what do you want first? The numbers? The accolades? The lifers? December’s collaborative results also summarises the year’s efforts, so this is December 2018 and the rest of 2018 all rolled into one sentence.

2019 43

Collaborative List – November 2018

10,000 Birds

Jamaica Bay, Big Egg Marsh. Jamaica Bay, Big Egg Marsh. A big thank you goes out to Tristan, who demonstrated that at least one person reads this drivel. He pointed out that Illinois had been sadly neglected up to this point, so Redgannet made a special visit to Chicago to redress this oversight. Tom and Pat were toe to toe in Costa Rica , so the numbers from there outshone anything else on the list for November, with over 60% of the month’s total shared between them.

2018 43

Collaborative List – October 2018

10,000 Birds

Aplomado Falcon – Falco femoralis. Jamaica Bay, Big Egg Marsh. In a month that contained the eBird Big Day , we can naturally expect that the beats have been racing about providing much fodder for the collaborative list. The two most prolific contributors, Pat and Tom, have been sharing their birding space in Costa Rica. Tom’s own list continues apace Those of us who have tried to do a big year know how tough it gets on the homeward stretch and will be rooting for him.

2018 43

Collaborative list – September 2018

10,000 Birds

Aplomado Falcon – Falco femoralis. Jamaica Bay, Big Egg Marsh. Jamaica Bay, Big Egg Marsh. The nights are drawing in and the mornings are cooler and noticeably damper. It’s September and time for birds to start their southerly journeys. The beats have been out to line their route and cheer them along, wishing them bon voyage and a safe return next spring. At the far ends of the world, our southern beats are poised to welcome them back.

2018 43

Collaborative List – June 2018

10,000 Birds

Jamaica Bay, Big Egg Marsh. Jamaica Bay, Big Egg Marsh. It’s all been happening this month. Just when we thought that the beats deserved a quiet month after the exertions of May, they came out with Bushnell’s blazing and gave June both barrels! Honduras , Malaysia and the southern-most bits of South Africa feature large this month with Mike, Duncan and Tom all vying to be MVB for June.

2018 40

Collaborative List – May 2018

10,000 Birds

Jamaica Bay, Big Egg Marsh. Jamaica Bay, Big Egg Marsh. That was May. Month of months. As we pass into June we can forgive some of our northern beats if they take a few moments to savour the past few weeks. But the beats go on in Southern climes and our intrepid little-big-year beat, Tom enters Africa. No peace for the blessed (Are you all as impressed as I am that Tom is in Africa and still finding time to review photos, share checklists and write blog posts?).

2018 40

Collaborative List – August 2017

10,000 Birds

Eastern Egg Rock. Eastern Egg Rock. Eastern Egg Rock. 9 beats, birded 9 countries this month; Belize , Guatamala , Costa Rica, UK, Iran, USA, Greece, Australia and Mexico. They submitted 144 checklists, noting 628 species adding 72 to the year’s running total bringing it to 1890. The western hemisphere’s pasting last year has been reversed as it currently out-scores the eastern hemisphere by 1210 to 746.

2017 40

Collaborative List – February 2018

10,000 Birds

Jamaica Bay, Big Egg Marsh. Barred Forest-Falcon – Micrastur ruficollis. Collared Forest-Falcon – Micrastur semitorquatus. Laughing Falcon – Herpetotheres cachinnans. Brown Falcon – Falco berigora. Bat Falcon – Falco rufigularis. Peregrine Falcon – Falco peregrinus. Prairie Falcon – Falco mexicanus. February birding can be tough.

2018 40

Collaborative List – January 2018

10,000 Birds

Jamaica Bay, Big Egg Marsh. Barred Forest-Falcon – Micrastur ruficollis. Collared Forest-Falcon – Micrastur semitorquatus. Laughing Falcon – Herpetotheres cachinnans. Brown Falcon – Falco berigora. Bat Falcon – Falco rufigularis. Peregrine Falcon – Falco peregrinus. Prairie Falcon – Falco mexicanus. Oh, the thrill of a new list!

2018 40

Collaborative List – April 2018

10,000 Birds

Jamaica Bay, Big Egg Marsh. Redgannet added another splash of colour to the collective profile by falling asleep on a boat and waking up in Uruguay , the 44th country to feature in the list. Corey smashed the world record for contributing to the list when he shared 29 lists in just 2 minutes. Redgannet retains the world record for staying up late to collate them. Tom barged us beyond the 30th incidence of Nelson.

2018 40

The Australian Bird Guide: A Review

10,000 Birds

Falcons follow hawks in the book, for example, while falcons follow hoopoes in the 2015 IOC World Bird List, and I think most of us (I’m looking at you, Jochen) will agree that the guide’s arrangement makes sense intuitively and pragmatically, if not taxonomically. Some offer nest information, egg information, breeding timeline, in flight views, etc. Are there birders out there who do not dream of birding Australia?

2017 40

Collaborative List – March 2018

10,000 Birds

New Zealand Falcon – Falco novaeseelandiae. Prairie Falcon – Falco mexicanus. Barred Forest-Falcon – Micrastur ruficollis. Claire and Grant have made it back to civilisation after sharing a checklist for almost every day of February. Their submissions didn’t quite make it into the February count, so we shall use them to boost the March figures. Tom continues his odyssey around the world, bumping into birds and beats along the way.

2018 40