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Old 2020-09-19, 23:27   #122
storm5510
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From Dale Hollow Lake, a juvenile Bald Eagle. An amazing mix of colors as he molts.
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Old 2020-09-28, 19:55   #123
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I repost it here, since it seem more appropriate ( from the 'thing that make you go hmmm)
https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2020...s-former-glory


and the paper
https://science.sciencemag.org/conte...cience.abd5777
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Old 2020-09-28, 22:26   #124
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I spent some time living at my dad's old place before and after he passed away from cancer. It was very rural. He had an outdoor swing behind his house. I would sit there frequently after sunset and listen to the owls communicating back and forth. There was a lot of woodlands in the area and they were everywhere. It seems like birds, in general, would sing more in urban areas if there was not so much noise.
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Old 2020-09-30, 13:36   #125
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Gray parrots separated at zoo after swearing a blue streak
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"When a parrot tells tells [sic] you to `f-β€” off' it amuses people very highly," he said Tuesday. "It's brought a big smile to a really hard year."

Nichols said the parrots have been separated to save children's ears. They were moved to different areas of the park so they don’t "set each other off," he said.
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Old 2020-09-30, 20:07   #126
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Originally Posted by Dr Sardonicus View Post
Go parrots!
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Old 2020-10-19, 19:20   #127
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Owl boards helicopter fighting California wildfire

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q3SyxMdI2U4

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Oct. 16 (UPI) -- A helicopter pilot helping to fight the Creek Fire in California snapped a photo of an "unheard of" scene -- an owl that boarded the chopper mid-flight.

Dan Alpiner, a pilot with aircraft charter company Sky Aviation, said he was helping conduct water drops over the Creek Fire in Fresno and Medera counties when an owl flew in through the window and perched calmly inside his helicopter.

"It's odd to have an owl enter an aircraft," Sky Aviation said in a Facebook post. "It's unheard of to have it enter while the helo is in-flight. It's an unexplainable and magical miracle for it to stay with you for several water drops, then leave just as it arrived -- safe and unannounced."
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Old 2020-10-23, 04:24   #128
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Default The Northern Cardinal Is Actually Multiple Species, Evidence Suggests

https://gizmodo.com/the-northern-cardinal-is-actually-multiple-species-evi-1831105503
I can neither confirm nor deny the assertions contained herein.

I am, however, a cardinal devotee. We interact with three young adult cardinals several times a day. They have us well trained, especially the two more cautious individuals. They come to a cautious distance on the "veranda" (roof over the 2 flat building front door). They make very short, high-pitched chirps or peeps. They keep their distance until we throw out some peanut pieces on the roof, (which is the floor we walk on our there.) when a piece lands, they swoop down, or hop aggressively to get it. They are competing with English House Sparrows which swarm and try to snatch the half peanut, or pieces that fall when the cardinal is eating. More on this.

There are two males and a female. We call them Junior, Blackface, and Sister. It has now gotten to the point that we distinguish J and B by beak color. The beak is black on younger birds, and only becomes orange for females and red for males as they mature. Their feather colors come in earlier than the beak colors. It makes me think that the color of the feathers is produced differently than the beak colors.

Dr S- You have pointed out that Indigo Buntings are really black, but appear blue via diffraction(?) in the feathers. On the other hand, House Finch males acquire their red wash from fruits and berries.
I wonder if the blue berries are giving them beak color.

In any case, Blackface and Sister are the ones who keep their distance. Junior, the youngest, will come to the concrete window ledge a few feet from us to eat birdseed mix, plus roasted peanuts, blueberries, and lately, pepitas. He will perch there and munch for minutes at a time.

Our other assumed responsibility is deter sparrows, pigeons, and a Mourning Dove from mobbing the cardinals. They clearly know that the brandished squirt bottle isn't intended for them. For the intruders just showing the instrument of torture deterrence will cause many to evacuate.We aim to the side anyway, except for the most persistent marauders, but the cardinals, and especially Junior will go right on chowing down. He may drop from the sill to the roof during deterrence actions, but he comes right back..

EDIT: I have to revisit this, as I came upon mention of cardinals deriving their feather color from fruit they eat. There is a mutation in some species which brings in pigments as yellow.
https://www.audubon.org/news/why-nor...ardinal-yellow
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Old 2020-10-23, 16:42   #129
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Default An Old, Feisty Female Cardinal Bit the Same Scientist Eight Years Straight

https://www.audubon.org/news/an-old-...years-straight
Biologist Eric Lind, who heads up the Audubon Center at Constitution Marsh on the east side of the Hudson River, has had a unique experience with a cardinal.
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During spring breeding season, Eric and his team capture and band birds at the marsh. They're part of an important study, because the north end of this 270-acre tidal marsh is a remediated Superfund site. For eight years in a row, Eric caught the very same female cardinal. Eight years – that's about twice the average age of an adult cardinal. This aggressive female didn't just peck at the banders' fingers like other captured birds, but clamped its strong bill on to the soft flesh between his thumb and first finger. And held on tight. Ouch!
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Old 2020-10-24, 00:54   #130
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When I was in high-school, my dad built a really big bird feeder and mounted it on top of a steel pole set in cement under a large tree. He only put seed out in the winter. Cardinals would be thick around the feeder after a fresh snow. They were the bright red males and the muted females. There was so many that they chased the smaller birds off the feeder to pick at what fell in the snow. We would watch from the double kitchen windows. A good memory.
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Old 2020-10-24, 11:22   #131
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We don't get cardinals in these parts. What we do get are grajas ( Pyrrhocorax pyrrhocorax barbarus) which are crow-like birds with red beaks and legs. Make a hell of a racket, too. I can speak rook and carrion crow well enough (well enough for them to listen and respond, anyway) but graja is a bit high-pitched for me, too falsetto. I am improving with practice though and our pair are starting to reply to us.

A pair have been nesting in the dragon tree outside our veranda for at least three years, raising 1 or 2 young each spring/summer. The rest of the time they roost under the eaves of the veranda.

AFAIK, La Palma is the only Canary island where they live and are supposedly relatively rare. Not round here they are not. We sometimes see a flock of over a hundred of them circling in the thermals.
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Old 2020-10-24, 17:52   #132
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xilman View Post
...AFAIK, La Palma is the only Canary island where they live and are supposedly relatively rare. Not round here they are not. We sometimes see a flock of over a hundred of them circling in the thermals.
Canary Islands, I hope no one decides to import starlings. We have the British to thank for the hundreds of millions here in the states. They brought them here in the 18th century during colonization. Thanks to the falcons living here now, starlings are no where near as populous as they were before. Starlings do not want to be anywhere near falcon territory. I do not know exactly what variety of falcons live here. They do what nature intended them to do. The local bald eagle population appears to share the same territory though. There are red-tail hawks here as well.
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