Friday, December 26, 2008

Loose Feathers #167

Red Crossbill / Photo by Dave Menke (USFWS)

Bird and birding news
  • EBird has a useful overview of how to identify crossbill species by ear, with linked audio samples.
  • Cape May NWR acquired an additional 437 acres last week. There seem to be two tracts involved – a saltmarsh along Bidwell Creek in Middle Township and a 371-acre grassland in Lower Township. At least some of the land acquired will be open for hiking and birding.
  • In addition, Pennsylvania is getting its third National Wildlife Refuge. The new refuge comprises 20,466 acres in Cherry Valley in the Poconos. Land within the refuge will be protected with a combination of purchases and conservation easements. People with existing property will continue to live within the refuge boundaries. Cherry Valley is the first NWR designated in the Northeast in a decade and the first in Pennsylvania since Tinicum in 1972.
  • Hen harriers face extirpation in England due to persecution, primarily from game wardens.
  • Shade coffee not only benefits birds, but also preserves local plant diversity.
Birds in the blogosphere
General environmental news