Friday, February 27, 2009

Loose Feathers #176

Heerman's Gull / Photo by Lee Karney (USFWS)

Bird and birding news
  • A willet and a sanderling are setting lifespan records at the Monterey Bay Aquarium. The willet was taken into captivity as an adult 21 years ago, and the sanderling is at least 22.
  • A report from Birds Australia found that native Australian bird populations are in decline due to recent severe droughts and habitat modification. Waterbirds and shorebirds have been hit especially hard. Full report here.
  • BirdScope explains why drinking shade rather than sun coffee is important, and how to tell if a coffee is sustainable.
  • Research suggests that carotenoids not only make birds brighter but also improve their color vision.
  • Fish and Wildlife officials destroyed an eagle nest at Martin State Airport in Maryland because it was deemed a hazard to aircraft. One egg was lost as a result of the nest removal; the egg will be tested for thickness and contaminants.
  • Climate change seems to be the leading culprit for the wave of deaths and injuries among brown pelicans in California.
  • One of the challenges facing conservationists is the "shifting baseline syndrome," in which people they are trying to persuade do not realize that the environment is changing around them.
Birds in the blogosphere
Environmental news
Carnivals and newsletters