In the Sibley Guide to Birds I wrote that Western and Clark’s Grebes are “incapable of walking”. I thought they could only push themselves along on their bellies, but I should have known that I was flirting with danger by writing such an absolute statement. Soon after the book was published I heard that they […]
Archives for May 2012
I’ve just posted a new painting for auction. You can see the auction and closing time in the sidebar to the right. This is a small gouache painting of a singing male Common Yellowthroat, which will be appearing here soon in a blog post about bird song. For more images and more details about the […]
After my post a few days ago about the unusual Cattle Egret in Florida, I heard from two people with interesting observations to add. Robert Edgar and Sarah McKenzie sent the photos featured here and said “We photographed a very similar bird on 1 May 1995 at a breeding colony in the Nile Valley, Egypt.It […]
Among the many benefits of paying attention to bird sounds is that they give you an insight into what the birds are doing. Through their songs and calls the birds announce not only their presence, but also what they are doing. One example is the mobbing of predators. Birds give alarm calls when they see […]
Today’s quiz features a bonus And we have a winner – Congratulations to Nicholas! Thanks to all who entered. Watch for another quiz giveaway in the near future. Everyone who submits a perfect score by 9 PM Eastern Time on Thursday May 24th, will be entered in a drawing to win a prize. The prize […]
Test your knowledge of bird feather topography with the questions below.
In late April 2012, Roy Halpin found and photographed an entirely buff-colored Cattle Egret in Saint Augustine, Florida. This is a particularly interesting bird because it provides an opportunity to consider the unusual nature of Cattle Egret coloration, as well as the identification of Cattle Egret subspecies. Coloration in Cattle Egrets To understand this bird’s […]
The next part of my introduction to learning bird songs is now up (click here). Birds can hear a lot “faster” than we can, however, and consequently can extract a lot more information from the very rapid series of notes. The differences are there, and a Chipping Sparrow does not get confused by the songs […]
Part 5 of my introduction to learning bird songs is now up (click here). Many of the words that we use to describe the quality of a bird song also carry information about pitch and tempo. For example, only sounds in a certain pitch range can be described as whistled, and we tend to call […]
I’ve been neglecting trees in my posts recently, but here in Massachusetts spring is the best time of year for tree-watching, and today the sun was out offering some good photo opportunities.