Archive for Information
This American crow was hooting above the din of the tundra swans at Brigantine NWR this past weekend.
Two crows were perched very close to each other, almost touching; only one of them was making the mysterious note, a sweet, full, high-pitched repeated toot.
It went on for nearly ten minutes. Finally the crows took off, one flying out of sight, the other landing at the edge of the parking lot to utter a few honest to goodness caws before joining its companion.
I couldn’t remember ever having heard that sound from a crow, though once I determined its author, it seemed obvious enough.
Never a dull day when there are corvids around.
Beneath the streets and sidewalks of downtown Tucson lies the original site of Camp Lowell, which stood for eight years on Sixth Ave. before the malarial influences of the nearby Santa Cruz forced the move north to Pantano Wash. History-minded birders keep a special place in memory for Camp Lowell and its most famous ornithological inhabitant, Major Charles Bendire.
It was during his time here that Bendire collected the first rufous-winged sparrows and Bendire’s thrashers known to science, and it was during his time here that he had his famous adventure at the nest of the zone-tailed hawk.
Those were red-letter days all, but what was a more normal birding day like for Bendire? He told us in 1890:
Large flocks [of terrestrial birds] would frequently alight on the open ground about my camp, especially about the picket line where the cavalry horses were tied up at night and fed, and at such times they would allow themselves to be approached rather closely, and it was generally an easy matter to select such specimens as one wanted while they were searching for food.
Far easier nowadays to just fill a pocket with millet.
I don’t think I would have figured this one out if I hadn’t watched the bird do it.
This was Saturday morning in Atlantic County, New Jersey.
What do you think?
December 5: Lecture and book-signing at Wild Birds Unlimited, Paramus.
March 3, 2016: Lecture for Delaware Valley Ornithological Club.
March 12-16: New Mexico field trip with Linnaean Society of New York.
March 19-26: Nebraska: Sandhill Cranes and Prairie Grouse.
April 14-22: Birds and Art In Catalonia.
April 24 – May 2: Birds and Art in Provence.
May 24: “How — and Why — To Start Birding,” a lecture for North Shore Audubon Society.
May 25: “Made in New Jersey,” a lecture for Atlantic Audubon Society.
May 29 – June 4: Birds and Art in Burgundy.
September 30 – October 8: Birds and Art in Berlin and Brandenburg.
October 24 – November 1: Birds and Art in Venice and the Po Delta.