Animal Legal Defense Fund Ranks States on Animal Protection

Critter News

And the worst: Alabama, Alaska, American Samoa, Arkansas, Guam, Hawaii, Idaho, Iowa, Kentucky, Mississippi, Montana, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Northern Mariana Islands, South Dakota, Wyoming You can check out the whole report on their web site. The ALDF has released a report on how different states' animal protection laws stack up. Among the best: California, Illinois, Maine, Michigan, Oregon.

Racing to Save 2 Samoan Endemics

10,000 Birds

Sadly, that is indeed the situation in Samoa, where the Manumea , or Tooth-billed Pigeon , numbers fewer than 200 individuals. For more info on both species, check out this video from Samoa’s Ministry of Environment. It’s always tragic when a species goes extinct. But that tragedy is compounded when the species at risk is a country’s national bird. Americans of a certain age will recall how close their country came to losing the Bald Eagle.).

2014 59

Armchair Splits in the Pacific

10,000 Birds

The Wattled Honeyeater is a species, or now more accurately a genus, found in eastern Melanesia (Fiji) and in western Polynesia (Samoa and Tonga). At any rate the species should now be listed as the Eastern Wattled Honeyeater , which is the one I saw in Tonga and is also found in eastern Fiji and Samoa, the Northern Wattled Honeyeater (found in the islands of Tavenui and Vanua Levu) and the Western Wattled Honeyeater , which is the one I saw in Nadi in Viti Levu.

2014 60

Restless New Zealand Fantails

10,000 Birds

The family also reaches into India and as far east as samoa and Fiji. In his comment in last week’s post on the Marlborough Sounds , Beat writer Jochen described the New Zealand Fantail as one of the best birds in the world. It’s a sentiment I can get behind. Also known by its Maori name of P?wakawaka, wakawaka, the New Zealand Fantail is a delightful inhabitant of New Zealand, and one of my favourite local birds.

Confusing Collared Kingfishers

10,000 Birds

The Collared Kingfisher isn’t the most widespread kingfisher in the world (a distinction that would probably go to the Common Kingfisher or the Pied Kingfisher ), but it is close, ranging from the African coast of the Red Sea through to Tonga and American Samoa. Almost six thousands kilometres away, on Tutuila in American Samoa, there is another population of mostly white-headed Collared Kingfishers. Subspecies pealei , National Park of American Samoa.

Samoa 59

History repeating itself

10,000 Birds

The two endemic species found in Tonga are not found in these islands, and the other species present are also found on more traditional destinations of Fiji and Samoa. If studying insects would lead you to suppose that God had an “an inordinate fondness for beetles&# , studying the pre-human avifauna of the Pacific would lead you to conclude that God was also quite partial to rails. Pretty much every major island, and many smaller ones, had an endemic rail or two.

2011 57

Clearing up the Collared Kingfishers

10,000 Birds

Subspecies pealei , National Park of American Samoa. All the way back in 2011 I wrote about the confusing taxanomic enigma that is the Collared Kingfisher , a species that ranges from the Red Sea to Tonga in a bewildering variety of forms. I’m happy to report that an analysis of the species and some relatives has found that, as suspected, it isn’t a single species.

2015 61

The complete guide to Dodo relatives, living and dead

10,000 Birds

The Dodo ( Raphus cucullatus ) — that towering icon of modern anthropogenic extinctions — was a pigeon. Not, as Linneaus thought, an ostrich, nor even, as later scientists concluded, a distant cousin of pigeons deserving of family rank, it was an honest-to-goodness pigeon, deeply embedded within the family Columbidae.

2014 87

The Case for Adding the U.S. Territories in the Caribbean to the ABA Area

10,000 Birds

160,000), American Samoa (55,000), and the Northern Mariana Islands (54,000). I recently asked whether Puerto Rico should be part of the American Birding Association’s ABA Area. That post led to a spirited discussion on the ABA Facebook page. I will suggest an answer to the question: this post makes the argument that both Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands should be added to the ABA Area. # # #.

2017 56