This week in birds - #572

A roundup of the week's news of birds and the environment

The American Bird Conservancy's Bird of the Week for this week is a favorite of mine - the perky little Carolina Chickadee.

But the Bird of the Week for last week was one that I admit I had never heard of. It's the Baudo Guan, a bird that lives along the coastal regions of Colombia and Ecuador. 

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How much life is there on our home planet? A new study confirms that the answer to that question is "Quite a lot!"

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That life could be threatened by an outbreak of rabies which the city of Omaha is working to contain.

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It's been an exceptionally quiet hurricane season here along the Gulf Coast but the Atlantic Coast was a different story.

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Some people in Wyoming are not at all happy about the Biden Administration's emphasis on conservation, recreation, and renewable energy production on public lands.

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There was a bit of a scandal at the United Nations climate conference when it was revealed that the president of the conference planned to use the event to promote fossil fuels. (And how did a UAE oil executive get to be the president of the climate conference?)  

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The cherry trees along the Tidal Basin in Washington, D.C. are quite famous and quite beautiful but a hungry beaver is not impressed by all that.

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This is a Striated Falcon and it is a very smart bird. So smart, in fact, that his species rules on the Falkland Islands.

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In this country, Wild Turkeys are on the decline and it isn't really clear why this is happening. 

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As the seas rise because of the changing climate, that could be very bad news for some islands. A representative from the Marshall Islands has asked the countries at the COP28 conference for help.

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The UN weather agency says that 2023 will be the hottest year on record which is even more bad news for islands like the Marshalls.

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Here are some charts that help to quantify the climate crisis.

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The threatened Colorado River has a passionate defender.

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If you are a gardener, you might want to add the Turtle Tree Seed company to your list of suppliers. 

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Warblers seem to have a preference for wealthier neighborhoods but why that should be is down to the impact of urban policies adopted decades ago, policies that had an inherent racial prejudice.

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Wolverines will now be protected by being added to the Endangered Species List.

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Hydrilla is a highly invasive water plant and government scientists are adding their expertise to the fight against it.

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Insects on Mars? Not until scientists manage to establish viable plant growth on the red planet. 

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California's mountain lions remain at risk and one of their biggest threats is the highways and the vehicles that travel on them through their range. 

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This is De Winton's Golden Mole, a South African species that had been thought to be extinct for 86 years. It has been found again, alive and well in its expected habitat.

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When it comes to fighting climate change, the best weapons are those supplied by Nature herself.

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And that is why New York City is planning to plant thousands of trees to dramatically increase its tree canopy.

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A new calf born at the Sumatran Rhino Sanctuary in Indonesia has been added to a species that has fewer than 50 living members.

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This Chinstrap Penguin is snoozing and that is not unusual because this species can nod off more than 10,000 times a day! They sleep for as much as eleven hours a day, all accomplished in micronaps.

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Here is a gallery of some of the best wildlife photos from last week.

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Nature has produced many strange creatures and one of the strangest is the upside-down swimming Whipnose Anglerfish.

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And speaking of strange creatures, here is one from Mexico, the axolotl, an endangered type of salamander which scientists there are urgently trying to save.

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Ladybugs are cute little beetles but when they swarm into your house seeking winter shelter they can present quite a problem. (I remember that happening years ago in my parents' house and I can attest to the problem!

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Every single day for the last twenty years a wild Canindé Macaw called Julieta has visited her beloved Romeo who lives in an aviary in Rio de Janeiro. (And my question is what kind of heartless humans would keep such devoted lovebirds apart?)

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A sex imbalance among endangered green sea turtles is apparently being fueled by human-caused pollution. 

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The Australian fire season has started early and that is not a good thing.

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We thought we knew who the earliest Americans were and how they arrived but we may have been entirely wrong.

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Some of the early residents in Peru built aqueducts which are a marvel of engineering.

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A young humpback whale in the Bay of Seattle has been putting on quite the show for residents there.

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And a different kind of show is provided by a moth that looks very much like a hummingbird.

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Sea otters are returning to Canada's west coast but not everyone is happy about that.

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And off the coast of Maine, a unique lobster named Bowie is causing quite a stir. 

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In Australia, there's been an explosion in the population of long-haired rats, an event that humans find concerning. 

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Amphibians are adversely affected by climate change and some species are facing extinction.

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This is Rutt the moose who is on the loose in Minnesota and gaining something of a fan base there.

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Alexandra Petri has some thoughts about the renaming of birds and some suggestions for the new names.

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Finally, here are some baby turtles returning to the sea in Costa Rica.

Comments

  1. Great round-up of links, Dorothy; I've got a lot of reading to do. When you mentioned that the Australian fire season was starting early, it reminded me of the book I'm just about to finish: Adrian Hyland's Kinglake-350, a non-fiction account of a horrendous wildfire not far from Melbourne. I had no idea that this one place in Australia is the worst place for wildfire on Earth.

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    1. I read a fiction book a few years ago - the name of which eludes me at the moment - that was set in Australia and in which wildfire played a big part in the plot. I gather that such fires are a very big deal Down Under.

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  2. Good morning, Dorothy: Thanks for the roundup. I have missed it the last couple of weeks while in Cuba, where the effects of more powerful and more frequent hurricanes of recent years are on display for all to see. I have a visitor from Australia here right now and I am sure he will not be happy to read of wildfire concerns in his country, to which he will return on Tuesday. Take good care - David

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    1. I look forward to reading more about your trip to Cuba on your blog, "Travels With Birds."

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  3. The Carolina Chickadee is the most common bird in my backyard this fall. I love to watch the group that pops in every morning.

    I'm a tree fan. I'd like to do more tree planting next year.

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  4. The chickadee is adorable. The black-capped chickadees here seem a tad bigger. I like to watch them. I was a bit surprised that the beaver damage of the DC cherry trees is not prompting them to move the hungry beaver to a place more amenable. Those trees are big business!

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