November 11, 2020 7:07 PM   Subscribe

From chat, with permission:

18:35:35 marticus is there a theme, or just puffins?
18:36:31 aniola puffins
18:37:40 marticus fair enough
18:43:27 marticus you're just a shill for Big Bird! - /r/birdsarentreal
18:43:29 marticus :D
18:44:59 bread crumbs https://www.metafilter.com/131091/A-million-conspiracies-in-your-everyday-life#5146712
18:46:40 aniola ok i will include that, thanks!
18:47:45 notoriety public that comment is a work of sublime beauty
18:48:40 marticus indeed, but pigeons and seagulls are really just government drones
18:49:49 notoriety public Nuh-uh! They're DINOSAURS, and drones didn't exist 160 million years ago!
18:50:06 notoriety public Well, unless you're talking about the insect kind
18:50:25 notoriety public oh no, I've stumbled too close to the truth

See also PIRATE PUFFINS! by lemonade via Persistent Pirate Puffins Pace* the Pacific in IRL (the IRL part is a self-link)

There's lots more about puffins on the internet, but I'm going to stop now.
posted by aniola at 7:10 PM on November 11, 2020 [2 favorites]

The markings around their eyes always makes them look sad to me.
posted by notoriety public at 7:11 PM on November 11, 2020

I'm a Pirate Puffin and I approve this message.
posted by medusa at 7:22 PM on November 11, 2020 [2 favorites]

*frantically hides remnants of government bird drones*
posted by Marticus at 7:26 PM on November 11, 2020

Inside the mouth of a puffin.

posted by mandolin conspiracy at 7:40 PM on November 11, 2020

My favorite thing I learned is that they need their beak to help cool them off because they get as hot as a light bulb flying around hunting all those fish.
posted by aniola at 8:15 PM on November 11, 2020 [1 favorite]

Reportedly as many as 60 fish at a time.
posted by aniola at 8:16 PM on November 11, 2020 [2 favorites]

The article about the glowing beaks was, uh, illuminating. Had no idea:

For Jamie Dunning, lead author of new research on puffin beak luminescence published in the journal Bird Study, shining an ultraviolent light on a puffin beak seemed like a natural thing to do. As he knew, all birds live in a world of color humans can barely imagine. While our retinas have three kinds of photoreceptors, called cones, to pick up red, green, and blue wavelengths of light, bird retinas have four, letting them see red, green, blue, and ultraviolet light.

(...also, that's a very Clockwork Orange typo in that article).
posted by mandolin conspiracy at 8:21 PM on November 11, 2020

In one beak.
posted by aniola at 8:21 PM on November 11, 2020

I have seen puffins! They are excellent birds. They are not, however, graceful birds. I can only compare their flight to the kind of walking down the street that I do after a few too many. They don't so much land as impact the ground feet-first. Thump. All that considered! They are beautiful.
posted by Fiasco da Gama at 9:53 PM on November 11, 2020 [6 favorites]

I had to look up poffin boffin's username just to make double extra sure it was not "puffin boffin" because, well, eponysterical? Alas, tis not. And now I'm wondering what exactly a poffin is. Google suggests 'poffin' is pokemon food, but that doesn't seem to align with my mental image of the user. Ah well, UV-reflective beaks -- groovy!
posted by Alterscape at 10:05 PM on November 11, 2020

This somehow makes me nostalgic for the fun my kid used to have playing Club Penguin
posted by I_Love_Bananas at 3:32 AM on November 12, 2020

I don't want to imply that the FPP isn't righteously exhaustive, but I feel like this short Ze Frank documentary on puffin luvin belongs in the thread.
posted by es_de_bah at 4:50 AM on November 12, 2020 [4 favorites]

...and, aparently... good eat'n
posted by sammyo at 5:06 AM on November 12, 2020

MetaFilter: As many as 60 fish at a time!
posted by Bella Donna at 6:16 AM on November 12, 2020

Until I did a puffin image search last month, I hadn't realized puffins can fly--in my head they were penguins with fancy beaks! Per the puffin/penguin link above, they are also not even remotely close to penguin sized, only about 1 lb. Apparently I am not the only one to make that mistake...
posted by lemonade at 9:08 AM on November 12, 2020

posted by kathrynm at 4:41 PM on November 12, 2020

It was only recently discovered that their beaks are fluorescent!

posted by EarnestDeer at 7:34 PM on November 12, 2020

Seems like it would be easier to find someone who can see uv than to make and install puffin goggles.
posted by aniola at 7:52 PM on November 12, 2020

So in 2018, on a slow day in his former lab at the University of Nottingham in the United Kingdom, Dunning, now an environmental consultant, put a puffin specimen (which had died recently of natural causes) under a black light. Immediately, the bill seemed to glow.

It was pining for the fjords.
posted by mandolin conspiracy at 2:28 PM on November 13, 2020

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