248 posts tagged with Birds.
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"All I know is American Airlines loves me."

"Just over halfway through the year, a man named John Weigel spotted a Buller’s shearwater in California on July 16, making him the holder of the record for most bird species seen in North America in a calendar year: 750. But two days later, Olaf Danielson [world record nude birder] of South Dakota saw his 750th bird of 2016, a red-faced cormorant in Alaska. Now the men are in a fierce competition...." (previous bigyears)
posted by jessamyn on Sep 18, 2016 - 33 comments

they should have sent a poet (of chickens)

Fancy chickens were all the rage in the late 19th century, so Lewis Wright's Illustrated Book of Poultry was a big hit. With hundreds of pages of high density chicken information and dozens of beautiful chromolithographs by ornithological artist J.W. Ludlow, the book stayed in print for more than 40 years. Harvard University just digitized the book for public viewing. Here's their blog post about it. [more inside]
posted by moonmilk on Sep 10, 2016 - 29 comments

What's up everyone. I'm a stump today

It's the middle of the night in tropical Costa Rica, and you're wandering in the forest. Suddenly, you hear a sound like a jaguar having a really difficult bowel movement. But no! Actually it's a bird that looks like Jim Henson was asked to design a stoned alien. [more inside]
posted by selfnoise on Aug 31, 2016 - 18 comments

Pretty Polly Parrot Portuguese

This Brazilian duo of guitar and parrot are pretty good, but birds and guitars are not unusual. [more inside]
posted by Johnny Wallflower on Aug 26, 2016 - 7 comments

What would birds in flight look like if time was all smushed together?

Ornitographies by Xavi Bou. [more inside]
posted by signal on Aug 19, 2016 - 29 comments

Do we talk about golf or birds?

I'm Afraid to Talk to Men (slyt music video)
posted by stoneweaver on Jul 21, 2016 - 17 comments

They're all honestly way better than me

Birds demonstrate how to dance to different types of electronic music, and part 2, featuring more of the same.
posted by DoctorFedora on May 17, 2016 - 30 comments

Tweeteorology

The Cornell Lab of Ornithology BirdCast: Bird Migration Forecasts in Real-Time. When, where, and how far will birds migrate? Our migration forecasts will answer these questions for the first time.
posted by not_on_display on Apr 26, 2016 - 2 comments

Even though ye are naughty, I still luv ye... aye!

Who is this naughty raven? It's Izzie of the Knaresborough Castle Ravens. Read about the adventures of Izzie and her fellow ravens on their website: "One Saturday I was busy chatting to a local resident when Izzie decided to get up to mischief, she spotted a potential victim and like a spider drawing a fly into its web, Izzie did like wise with this poor unsuspecting visitor..." [more inside]
posted by bobobox on Apr 21, 2016 - 12 comments

Fallout (disambiguation)

"I asked Ralph Eldridge if he would share some of the migrating-songbird photos he has taken as a lighthouse keeper. [We] were slack-jaw amazed by the sight of so many types of songbirds together. The birds were exhausted and in desperate need of rest after flying for untold hours and miles on their journey from wintering grounds as far south as the Caribbean and South America."
posted by jessamyn on Apr 11, 2016 - 33 comments

Sacred Birds: Jesus Was a Cockatoo

Artist and painting instructor Kelley Vandiver has reinvented cardinals, hummingbirds, blackbirds, bluebirds, chickens, and lots of parrots as religious figures in iconic paintings. [more inside]
posted by littlewater on Mar 29, 2016 - 28 comments

post-traumatic stress and the expansive anatomy of empathy

"...parrots, among the oldest victims of human acquisitiveness and vainglory, have become some of the most empathic readers of our troubled minds. Their deep need to connect is drawing the most severely wounded and isolated PTSD sufferers out of themselves. In an extraordinary example of symbiosis, two entirely different outcasts of human aggression — war and entrapment — are somehow helping each other to find their way again." What Does A Parrot Know About PTSD? [NYT] [more inside]
posted by amnesia and magnets on Mar 22, 2016 - 25 comments

tweet tweet

It's time for some bird cams! Watch some bald eagles get ready to hatch at the DC Arboretum, check out some freshly hatched bald eagles in Minnesota, monitor four falcon eggs the atop the Rachel Carson State Office Building in Harrisburg, Pa (and follow along @falconchatter), keep an eye on the two peregrine falcon eggs at Pitt, or simply enjoy the variety of wild birds feeding outside the Cornell Lab.
posted by everybody had matching towels on Mar 17, 2016 - 18 comments

Cognition without Cortex

“Delay of gratification, mental time travel, reasoning, metacognition, mirror self-recognition, theory of mind, and third-party intervention.” A review article published in Trends in Cognitive Sciences describes certain bird species demonstrating these complex cognitive functions. [more inside]
posted by seyirci on Mar 6, 2016 - 22 comments

Birds Pay Protection Money to Big Alligator

The gruesome price birds in the Everglades pay for using alligators as bodyguards.
Over time, a study released Wednesday says, egrets, herons, ibises and storks that nest on islands developed a strategy. They nestle on tree limbs near alligators, which chase and sometimes eat nest raiders. For that service, alligators demand a heavy price — some of the birds' offspring. That's right: child sacrifice.
The study: Presence of Breeding Birds Improves Body Condition for a Crocodilian Nest Protector.
posted by OmieWise on Mar 4, 2016 - 23 comments

Ninja Eagle on Stilts - The Secretary Bird

Secretary birds can be found striding through the grasslands of sub-Saharan Africa. They cut a striking and unmistakeable profile, with light grey bodies, black wing tips and shorts, a red mask, and a crest of black quills. The latter, according to one dubious-sounding hypothesis, look like the quill pens that secretaries once tucked behind their ears—hence the bird's name. A more plausible alternative is that “secretary” is a bastardization of the Arabic “saqr-et-tair” for “hunter bird.” [more inside]
posted by narancia on Jan 26, 2016 - 12 comments

National Bird Day

Every January 5th, dozens of children in the United States wake up excited by the prospect of birdwatching. National Bird Day, now in its 14th year, is dedicated to the enjoying and preservation of our fine feathered friends. This year, organizers are encouraging people to take the “captive bird video pledge” and promise not to share videos of captive “pet” birds. Parents taking care of their babies
posted by JujuB on Jan 5, 2016 - 16 comments

Birds "looking directly down the lens with pride."

Captivating bird portraits by Australian wildlife photographer Leila Jeffreys. Extensive interviews and more photos here and here.
posted by Orange Dinosaur Slide on Nov 20, 2015 - 9 comments

Make sure your tablet is in a secure place before pressing play

Videos for Cats To Watch Volume 1 - a playlist of 32 videos filled with birds and squirrels and suchlike. The latest one is 38 minutes long and features birds twittering about on a fence and a bench. Warning: my cat attempted to destroy my laptop keyboard.
posted by desjardins on Nov 12, 2015 - 37 comments

“Lets just get this out of the way: no, it does not taste like chicken.”

The Burning Man of Birding: Inside Iceland's Puffin Festival by Brian Kevin [Audubon.org] For decades Icelanders have celebrated the Atlantic Puffin even while they've served it up on plates. But some traditions can't last forever.
These days, though, the only place to reliably find smoked puffin at Thjodhatid is in the concession tent, where, alongside cheeseburgers and chicken fingers, it’s sold for 1,500 krona, or about $12, per bird. That’s three times what it cost 20 years ago, making one little puffin an expensive snack; it’d take three birds to make a modest meal. So it isn’t a popular menu item—the concession tent has stocked just 600 birds for a three-day fest that regularly draws 16,000 people. Still, the puffin has its devotees.
posted by Fizz on Nov 11, 2015 - 31 comments

Bird of the Year

Every year, Forest and Bird New Zealand holds a vote for the (New Zealand) Bird of the Year. Will you vote for the cheeky kea, the fantail, the bellbird, the little blue penguin, the famous kakapo, the melodious kokako, the NZ robin, the plucky pukeko, the tui, the curious weka or one of the other contenders?
posted by scodger on Oct 8, 2015 - 25 comments

The birds that fear death

A study published in the journal Animal Behavior found that crows can recognize their fellow dead crows and learn to avoid the dangerous circumstances associated with death. The BBC described the study, which involved a "masked individual playing bad cop, arriving on the scene holding up a dead crow." [more inside]
posted by Rangi on Oct 2, 2015 - 38 comments

The Messengers

The Messengers Discussing grief and guilt and hope for the environment with a photographer who takes pictures of albatrosses that have died from ingesting plastic.
posted by primalux on Sep 12, 2015 - 7 comments

The Birds: Why the passenger pigeon became extinct

"One hunter recalled a nighttime visit to a swamp in Ohio in 1845, when he was sixteen; he mistook for haystacks what were in fact alder and willow trees, bowed to the ground under gigantic pyramids of birds many bodies deep." In his new book about the passenger pigeon, the naturalist Joel Greenberg sets out to answer a puzzling question: How could the bird go from a population of billions to zero in less than fifty years? (SLNewYorker.) [more inside]
posted by Rangi on Sep 3, 2015 - 48 comments

A "Wonderously Wonderful" Film with the "Strangest Cast[...] in History"

There exists a film whose trailer tantalizes the brain; a film whose English dub, believed to have been created by the notorious K. Gordon Murray (his previous lies - he is described as a "flim-flammer" who ran a "kiddie circuit"), has eluded even the most fervent afficionados of strange cinema. Thanks to the people of Sweden and a translator known only as Doctor Death (and fixes from uploader Justin Sane - you can see the translation by turning on captions), you can enter the world of The Secret of Magic Island: the live-action children's film starring an all-animal cast.
posted by BiggerJ on Aug 31, 2015 - 14 comments

Make a little bird bath in your soul

What better way to relax than to see a guy creating a bird bath in his hands for his pet finch?
posted by MartinWisse on Jun 18, 2015 - 29 comments

Social attraction

More than four decades ago, budding ornithologist Stephen Kress picked up an old field guide, and read that colonies of puffins had once nested on a tiny Maine island called Egg Rock, the last ones disappearing around 1885.

That fact so captivated him, he decided to try something that no other ornithologist ever hadhe would attempt to restore a native bird population to the Maine islands where they had once thrived.[Stephen Kress previously] [Bonus Puffin: PUFFIN CAM]
posted by Potomac Avenue on Jun 17, 2015 - 17 comments

A café setting that makes birds relatable, like they're in a soap opera

"When it really hit me that Piip Show wasn't happening again this year, that really gave me the push to set this up." Visit Junco's Pub: Tiniest Pub in Newfoundland (live stream), from Mefi's own stokast - see full project description on MeFi Projects; FAQ.
posted by joseph conrad is fully awesome on May 30, 2015 - 10 comments

Love Me Chicken Tender

Cockatoo loves Elvis. Other Cockatoo does not.
posted by The Whelk on May 30, 2015 - 41 comments

Movement in the Sky

An amazing murmuration of starlings to make your Monday more enjoyable. [slyt | previously 1,2]
posted by quin on May 4, 2015 - 31 comments

Strange Wing

While scientists have long known that modern day birds are dinosaurs (a fact that is self-evident if you ever look at a cassowary), it now appears that birds were not the dinosaurs' only attempt at flight. It may have had feathers, but the recently discovered Yi qi ("Strange Wing") had wings like a bat.
posted by brundlefly on Apr 29, 2015 - 22 comments

Making cats look silly, for a good cause

Saving birds' lives at the risk of making cats die of embarrassment
Domestic cats and tweety birds the world over have had a long-standing and rather one-sided feud: cats kill as many as 3.7 billion birds, mostly songbirds, every year in the US alone. One Vermont-based company, Birdsbesafe, is seeking to protect our feathery friends while imposing a little whimsical shame on our murdery, furry friends. How? With terrible, early-90s-esque scrunchies.
posted by Lexica on Mar 27, 2015 - 117 comments

"My business is built on everlasting trust.”

The Pigeon King and the Ponzi Scheme that Shook Canada [more inside]
posted by zarq on Mar 7, 2015 - 22 comments

When Is a Robin Not a Robin? When It's a Thrush.

With spring just around the corner (Mother Nature swears for real this time), North Americans are eagerly on the lookout for one of the earliest migratory harbingers of spring, the robin.

Wait, what? Robins are a Christmas bird! Hey, that's not a robin at all! [more inside]
posted by Eyebrows McGee on Mar 3, 2015 - 42 comments

Crows Show The Love

A little girl started feeding the crows accidentally, decided to make it a habit, and now receives gifts in return. Apparently, this is a crow thing.
posted by purplesludge on Feb 26, 2015 - 117 comments

100 Birds

The Hundred Birds Project

1 year, 100 carved birds, 100 types of wood.
posted by zamboni on Feb 5, 2015 - 9 comments

Your childhood is fine. Calm down.

A Comprehensive Guide to Dinosaur Feathers and Scales
posted by brundlefly on Feb 1, 2015 - 16 comments

We'll celebrate a woman for anything, as long as it's not her talent.

The celebrated Australian author Colleen McCullough, probably best known for The Thorn Birds, has died at 77. McCullough's contribution to writing contributed well after her most famous book and she will be sadly missed. What has caused ire has been the way that her obituary was written in the Australian national newspaper, The Australian, where the second line refers to her physical beauty and weight. The Guardian compares this with other obituaries of people who do not have to be classified by weight or beauty or, as you would know them, men.
posted by nfalkner on Jan 30, 2015 - 72 comments

He strives to impress his guest with a collection of blue gifts.

THE EROTIC AND SULTRY DANCE OF THE ADULT BOWERBIRD. (slyt)
posted by theodolite on Jan 24, 2015 - 30 comments

Birds on a wire

Birds on a wire....."One morning while reading a newspaper, Jarbas Agnelli saw a photograph of birds on an electric wire. He cut out the photo and was inspired to make a song using the exact location of the birds as musical notes. He was curious to hear what melody the birds created."
posted by HuronBob on Jan 13, 2015 - 27 comments

Sprouting feathers and lost teeth

"A remarkable international effort to map out the avian tree of life has revealed how birds evolved after the mass extinction that wiped out the dinosaurs into more than 10,000 species alive today. More than 200 scientists in 20 countries joined forces to create the evolutionary tree, which reveals how birds gained their colourful feathers, lost their teeth, and learned to sing songs." Via iO9.
posted by brundlefly on Dec 12, 2014 - 29 comments

Queer Birds

Birds, like quite a few other animals, can exhibit Gynandromorphism. Homosexual behavior in birds is also common. The phenomenon of avian spontaneous sex reversal has been well-documented, starting with Aristotle. Now modern researchers have uncovered yet another way in which birds are hacking sex roles: scientists think white-throated sparrows may actually be evolving a second pair of sex chromosomes.
posted by helpthebear on Nov 22, 2014 - 14 comments

Stink-eye? Or bored-eye? More like bird-eye: the shoebill's steady gaze

"A few days ago, my son, Lucas, and I took the train to Prague for his school break. Usually, when I visit a city, my first port of call is whatever passes for a botanical garden but when he told me that Prague’s zoo contained not only giant salamanders but also two pairs of shoebills, I could not resist the temptation..." (John Burnside's essay in The New Statesman.) [more inside]
posted by joseph conrad is fully awesome on Nov 20, 2014 - 4 comments

How Fake Fossils Pervert Paleontology

A nebulous trade in forged and illegal fossils is an ever-growing headache for paleontologists. [more inside]
posted by brundlefly on Nov 18, 2014 - 7 comments

Menagerie Phantasmagoria

The fantastic animal sculptures of Ellen Jewett.
posted by cenoxo on Oct 26, 2014 - 4 comments

My outdoor beach cafe is on fire. Apparently. So relaxing!

White noise a little too stuffy? Nature sounds a little too outdoorsy? Wish Starbucks had a cricket infestation? Mix it up with a custom ambient noise generator!
posted by phunniemee on Oct 14, 2014 - 27 comments

Chicken or egg? There was no moment when a dinosaur became a bird.

A team of researchers, including University of Edinburgh paleontologist Stephen Brusatte and Swarthmore College Associate Professor of Statistics Steve C. Wang, cataloging 853 skeletal characteristics in 150 dinosaurs and analyzing the rate at which these characters change, and they found that "there was no grand jump between nonbirds and birds in morphospace." In other words, birds didn't suddenly come into existence, but evolved, bit by bit, or characteristic by characteristic. But when birds were finally a thing, they went crazy. "Once it came together fully, it unlocked great evolutionary potential that allowed birds to evolve at a super-charged rate."
posted by filthy light thief on Sep 29, 2014 - 37 comments

Paper birds

Diana Beltran Herrera sculpts beautiful birds out of paper. She's currently working on a series based on postage stamps; you can see some of the new birds on her Facebook page. [via]
posted by jacquilynne on Sep 29, 2014 - 12 comments

Why do migrating birds fly in a V formation?

"It was always assumed that V-formation flight was learned from the adult birds. But these guys are all the same age and they learned to fly from a human in a microlight. They learned V-formation flying from each other. National Geographic reports on some of the fascinating intricacies of the V formation observed in migrating birds.
posted by paleyellowwithorange on Sep 21, 2014 - 28 comments

And no birds sing

Invertebrate numbers nearly halve as human population doubles. The decline of birds might have something to do with this recent news that half the insects (and spiders, crustaceans, slugs, worms) are gone.
posted by sfenders on Aug 30, 2014 - 61 comments

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