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Recent content by pbgrebe

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    Penguin books and documentaries

    Yes, penguins are amazing, endearing birds! I spent a year working in Antarctica and got to see Emperor and Adelie penguins during my time there. Here are a couple of books about the Adelie penguin that I highly recommend: The Adelie Penguin: Bellwether of Climate Change by David Ainley. I had...
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    An unusual avian Christmas e-card

    While cleaning out files from my computer I came across one that I made during the period when I worked on the California condor reintroduction project that I had completely forgotten about. During the holiday season in one of those years I had been playing around on my computer and, just for...
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    A Coot Mugging

    Yes, there are lots of interesting examples of this type of behavior. Various gull species are particularly known for engaging in thievery. One of the coolest such instances that I’ve observed quite a few times involved gulls chasing and relentlessly harassing ospreys who had just captured a...
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    A Coot Mugging

    Numerous instances of thefts by individuals within and between avian species have been observed. Here’s one that I recently observed again that isn’t as popularly known. In this instance an American wigeon was observed following and hanging close around an American coot. Its reason for doing so...
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    What is this gull?

    Wow! That's quite a video! That unfortunate duckling paid the ultimate price for getting separated from the tightly packed grouping of the brood (a stark illustration of the adaptiveness of keeping tightly grouped when confronted by a predator). The mom put up a valiant defense but the skill and...
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    30 years dead Black-footed Ferret cloned

    As noted in my previous post there seems to be some misunderstanding here as to just what caused the demise of the black-footed ferret (BFF). The case of the BFF is a classic illustration of the interconnectedness that exists between various species and how the human caused severe decimation of...
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    30 years dead Black-footed Ferret cloned

    Hi John, I checked out the black-footed ferret (BFF) article from Wikipedia that you cited and found that it wasn’t particularly well written and contained numerous inaccuracies. I worked closely with BFFs in the recovery program during the early to mid-1990’s, up to the point after...
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    pied billed grebe

    Hi Vince PB grebes certainly are fascinating. They have a hugely extensive range in North and Central America, the most extensive of any North American grebe species. Within this extensive range are both resident and migratory populations. PB grebes are strictly aquatic birds. Of particular...
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    An Impressive Catch By A Roadrunner

    I’ve always been very impressed with the quickness, agility and hunting skills of greater roadrunners. I recently observed something that left me even more impressed with these skills. As this incident began, two black-chinned hummingbirds were foraging low in flight under the lower branches of...
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    Passenger Pigeon Story

    I’m hesitant about commenting on your post because I don’t want this thread to degenerate into a discussion on a ranking of which act against a species was worse than another. This is because when people do such rankings there is a tendency in peoples minds to somewhat diminish the despicable...
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    Passenger Pigeon Story

    I find the theory proposed here to be unconvincing, A basic tenet of theory is that the proposed elements and conclusions of the theory must fit the actual observations. While it certainly is plausible that the passenger pigeon may have experienced cycles of population highs and lows there are...
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    Passenger Pigeon Story

    To SanAngelo, As a clarification, in my phrase “… the single most reprehensible of our many crimes against nature” my reference here is in regard to what was done to a particular species. In other words, of all the individual species that humanity has driven to extinction the case of the...
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    Robin carrying dead mouse

    Cool observation! I’ve found that it’s not uncommon for species to surprise with opportunistic deviations from their typical food items. For example, a few years ago I saw an American coot scavenging on the floating carcass of a large fish (this was the first and only time that I have seen a...
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    Passenger Pigeon Story

    Given the magnitude of what was done, the human-caused extinction of the passenger pigeon stands as the single most reprehensible of our many crimes against nature. Within a period of essentially just three decades our species drove what almost certainly was the most numerous avian species ever...
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    New book about chick rearing by the pied-billed grebe

    I wanted to add a few photos to my original post (re. the book Life and Loss Among the Reeds) but didn’t know how to edit it. I thus decided to put them in a separate post. The book consists of detailed observations of the chick rearing process in two pied-billed grebe families. The photos are...