Friday, October 02, 2020

Loose Feathers #769

Black-crowned Night-Heron / Photo by Grayson Smith/USFWS

Birds and birding news

  • The outcome of the November election will affect bird conservation, both directly through enforcement of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act and Endangered Species Act and indirectly through protections for public lands and water and action on climate change. The link explains some of the issues at stake.
  • Some American Robins migrate long distances between their wintering and breeding grounds, while others stay in the same area year-round. A research project is currently tracking their movements.
  • The White Stork Project is tracking the migration routes taken by captive-bred storks released in the UK. So far storks have been recorded as far south as Morocco.
  • Pinyon Jays and Clark's Nutcrackers use similar habitats and both cache food to survive the winter.
  • Melting ice revealed a lost colony of mummified Adelie Penguins that were frozen a millennium or more ago.
  • Last year there were 85 incidents of birds being killed to support grouse hunting in the UK.

Science and nature blogging

Biodiversity and conservation

  • Captive breeding has restored pygmy rabbits to the Columbia Basin, but the wild population is still vulnerable to wildfires and habitat fragmentation.
  • Some beetles can withstand cyanide gas released by their millipede prey.

Climate change and environmental politics