• BirdForum is the net's largest birding community dedicated to wild birds and birding, and is absolutely FREE!

    Register for an account to take part in lively discussions in the forum, post your pictures in the gallery and more.

Ivory-Billed Woodpecker continued (1 Viewer)

Status
Not open for further replies.

motiheal

Well-known member
Hi. A bit late to the other thread's party (12 pages, closed) which was begun by Mike Collins. He is right; the IBWO does exist, and I would like to clarify some issues mentioned, and to also mention some "next-gen" search methods that it seems the thread audience is not aware of. I will be brief, to-the-point, use logic, and will reply to comments that make sense. Since I understand that this is just a comment on a forum, my hope is that perhaps it will sway some opinions of people who can help with the search, either through personal effort, ideas, or funding.

I've been a focused student of the IBWO for over a decade (and my professional background is natural science for 45 years) and have corresponded with all the known-name searchers and writers on the topic.

1. For the layperson birder who compares the search to Bigfoot, the answer here is simple-- the more you read about Bigfoot evidence, the less you believe. The more you read about IBWO evidence (Collins, Mark Michaels, Cornell, Auburn with Geoff Hill, Dan Mennill acoustic data, Bobby Harrison, Tim Gallagher, Martjan Lammartink, people involved in the Cuban efforts, sorry if I am leaving anyone else out), the more you believe. So a person commenting in this regard would need to know a lot to say the least.

2. The IBWO is a rare, low-density semi-nomadic species with a flee distance of about 100 meters that lives in heavily wooded areas, has great vision, and uses trees to hide behind. Enough said with difficulty to photograph.

3. Perhaps the most telling theme of the comments from the last thread is how unaware interested people are of current efforts and reports.

a. Mark Michaels of Project Principalis (formerly Project Coyote) has teamed with the National Aviary and is or will be using ARUs this season to triangulate a nest location, in an area with much IBWO evidence, in Louisiana USA.

b. Matt Courtman, former President of Louisiana Ornithological Society, is devoting full-time efforts to educate potential searchers, and to begin his own efforts to search.

c. To those who had mentioned the value of various peer-reviewed-or-not modes of publishing, I find it highly ironic that, after monitoring many IBWO writing sites over a number of years, most action, in terms of new possible reports, now seems to be on a Facebook page. This in some ways is inevitable since it is not just scientists or birders that encounter the IBWO. This page has suggested IBWO concentrations on the Peace River, Florida, and the Aucilla River, Florida.

d. My own interests and efforts began after a possible encounter with an IBWO at Manatee Springs State Park in Florida. After reading of IBWO encounter history, I quickly concentrated on ways to get closer to the bird, which of course could result in a definitive photograph. Here is what I believe now--

i. Do not use a human silhouette. Use a kayak, canoe, tree stand, camo, blind etc. There are reports from observers in parked cars and on horses. Do not hike while searching.

ii. Do not use double knock sounds. There is evidence these are territorial and will cause interest but not close approach.

iii. Do not search in "likely habitat." There is evidence that IBWOs are more generalized feeders, and more adaptable to habitat including trees, than generally believed. And, they are very rare. So, follow up probable sightings and concentrate on these spots.

iv. There is evidence that "single knocks" for IBWOs are positional for family units. Use these sporadically, and listen for responses or watch for sightings.

v. Use a video camera, not still photography (as per Collins). There is more of a chance of capturing a still image here, and it can show motion and thus behavior to help ID.

vi. IBWOs react like birds (stating the obvious), so it is possible that they will automatically react to the right stimulus, i.e. "forced behavior" as Matt Courtman calls it. An obvious possibility is a juvenile begging call which may have an instinctive component to stimulate an approach. No recorded begging calls exist for the IBWO, but they do for the related (in taxonomy, niche, and latitude) Magellanic Woodpecker. Playing this call, especially in a "hormonal" month, may elicit an approach.

I have field-tested the begging call hypothesis in an area known for possible IBWO and in two separate trips, a total of six field days, had one probable and two other possible sightings.

And, I might add, that with up-to-date search technology (ARUs, drones, other) and careful study and adaptation from historic search methods... it's only a matter of time.

John Williams
Long Island, NY, USA
 
Last edited:

SanAngelo

Well-known member
How come no one is chasin' down the Passenger Pigeon or the Caroline Parakeet?

Isn't there a pocket in some state where they could be hidin'?
 

KC Foggin

Super Moderator
Staff member
Opus Editor
Supporter
United States
Good question SanAngelo but Deb is right. The Government won't support something like this.
 

YuShan

hikingbirdman.com
United Kingdom
I expect that pretty soon we will be confronted with convincing clear video of IBWO. The reason: the $50.000 reward for evidence of its existence and other monetary gain to be made from such a video.

Spoiler: the footage will be fake, generated by artificial intelligence and will be indistinguishable from real footage. It is amazing what is already possible nowadays. It is just a matter of time till somebody with an AI animation studio generates this. Such a video when presented as real would go absolutely viral and has the potential of generating millions of views (= $$$). Similar for footage of a Tasmanian Tiger etc.
 

Larry Sweetland

Formerly 'Larry Wheatland'
I expect that pretty soon we will be confronted with convincing clear video of IBWO. The reason: the $50.000 reward for evidence of its existence and other monetary gain to be made from such a video.

Spoiler: the footage will be fake, generated by artificial intelligence and will be indistinguishable from real footage. It is amazing what is already possible nowadays. It is just a matter of time till somebody with an AI animation studio generates this. Such a video when presented as real would go absolutely viral and has the potential of generating millions of views (= $$$). Similar for footage of a Tasmanian Tiger etc.
Wow! There's a thought. 'Walking with dinosaurs' is quite convincing, considering. And with each passing day computer generated imagery just gets more and more real...
 

dantheman

Bah humbug
So all my posts have been deleted by someone - yet all the other posts having a laugh on this thread remain - perhaps someone doesn’t realise they are all tongue in cheek comments? how very odd and petty 🙄
I think this thread is probably been complained about as a non-serious item in a serious section of BF?? Possibly too much ganging up on OP.

Probably should be in Ruffled Feathers!! ;-) (restored version)
 

Steve

Surfing
Staff member
United Kingdom
I deleted the idiot posts on this thread, the OP clearly took some time to get his/her view onto the site and whether you believe
the bird is alive, dead, or hiding there is no need to ridicule or act like children with stupid irrelevant pictures of apes etc, if you have a point
to make then make it like an adult.:mad:

for the record I think IBW is long extinct, but respect the opinions of others.
 

Bird_Bill

Well-known member
I live in the (former?) range of that bird.
Grew up along the Mississippi, where the ancient stands of bald cypress, and tupelo nurtured generations of the Ivory bill.

The river channelized, the habitat erased, the entire ecosystem gone for the most part.
The hope exist, but realistically, I doubt the bird does
 

jurek

Well-known member
If you think the IBWO exists, get a photo or a film. Accept from the start that people will ask for it.

Deb: but everyone knows that ornithological circles did keep secrecy in a coordinated manner in the 2000s, when said sightings of IBWO happened. So a conspiracy is possible. What is improbable that no independent person breaks the cover, and that there is no hard evidence in the age of camera phones and youtube. Sadly, trust in so-called experts or scientists broke down completely in American society.

Larry and YoShan - I fear a little that birdwatching in general would change into watching computer generated images of nature, because traveling will become impossible due to economic crisis.
 

Steve

Surfing
Staff member
United Kingdom
I can delete the foolish posts quicker than you can write them, now might not be a good time to try my patience.
 

motiheal

Well-known member
I expect that pretty soon we will be confronted with convincing clear video of IBWO. The reason: the $50.000 reward for evidence of its existence and other monetary gain to be made from such a video.

Spoiler: the footage will be fake, generated by artificial intelligence and will be indistinguishable from real footage. It is amazing what is already possible nowadays. It is just a matter of time till somebody with an AI animation studio generates this. Such a video when presented as real would go absolutely viral and has the potential of generating millions of views (= $$$). Similar for footage of a Tasmanian Tiger etc.
This is done with motions of cars in racing simulator games, and these are easy to tell from the real ones. And natural settings are harder to replicate. So, no.
 

motiheal

Well-known member
If you think the IBWO exists, get a photo or a film. Accept from the start that people will ask for it.

Deb: but everyone knows that ornithological circles did keep secrecy in a coordinated manner in the 2000s, when said sightings of IBWO happened. So a conspiracy is possible. What is improbable that no independent person breaks the cover, and that there is no hard evidence in the age of camera phones and youtube. Sadly, trust in so-called experts or scientists broke down completely in American society.

Larry and YoShan - I fear a little that birdwatching in general would change into watching computer generated images of nature, because traveling will become impossible due to economic crisis.
There was no general conspiracy. There were some instances of keeping locations secret.
 
Status
Not open for further replies.

Users who are viewing this thread

Top