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Ivory-billed Woodpecker: Debunking the Critics (1 Viewer)

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1TruthSeeker

Well-known member
As a curiosity, 1TruthSeeker, when was the latest IBWO report, audio or visual? I had heard about the Cuba trip, but nothing much from the southern US swamps.
On Cuba, conversed with the recent CU searchers that went there. They covered too little ground because logistics and problems devoured time. They did not survey much ground; that study accomplished very little as far as the question of presence absence in East Cuba.

This is a different species than the US IB. Regardless it might be extinct, I would like to take a look and survey 4 key areas correctly for one month total. Need funding though.

tks
 

Hauksen

Forum member
Hi,
The IBWO search team had both autonomous 'robo-birders' and recording units out in the field recording for years, contrary to suggestions upthread there are no incontrovertible audio recordings, faint possible recordings have been shown to have similar acoustic signatures to other sound sources.

I'll add that most of those initially involved have washed their hands of the story as a salutary lesson in evidence. You won't find a validated 21st century record of IBWO on the flagship citizen science initiative of the institution that broke the story.

Thanks a lot, I wasn't aware of that. The duck wing sounds mentioned in your link are the acoustic equivalent of an optical mis-indentification of a visually similar species, and I'm not surprised that would happen as the "mundane" species/sound is going to occur a lot more often than the near-extinct (in the best case) Ivory-billed Woodpecker or its double rap.

Regards,

Henning
 

ZanderII

Well-known member
Too funny. In a prior post I asked if you had any circa 2005 notes or posts that doubted the IB Persists paper. I suspected you had no written comments/notes/posts and are a casual follower at best of the actual evidence and its meaning. I believe you accepted the sighting and evidence then and now are seeing the alleged light. I asked what are the weaknesses in the Science evidence listing the AR video and spectacular restored IMWO film as a primary nexus point.

Again, Too funny. thanks3:)

Truthseeker - I have worked at the lead institution of the Science paper and know many of the authors personally. There are no verifiable sightings of IBWO, no unambiguous recordings or video, despite a huge effort. If there were they would be archived as such in the Macaulay Library. Undocumented sight records are interesting but fundamentally not scientific evidence - people - quite often with internet handles like 'truthseeker' claim that the UK is awash with big cats for instance and these reports can reach the msm. There is however no evidence to support these frequent claims, one would expect pug prints, scat, roadkill, stock losses, human interactions etc but people believe because once the rumour mill has started people will 'see' them.

The bird is uncanny like many wary animals in finding the most secluded spot (numerous small streams/bayous) in braided river bottoms to habituate. It can take hours to go a few miles and some areas can't be reached. It's also noisy to get in these area and an IB will hear/see you coming. Depending on season an IBs' daily caloric needs when not nesting can be satisfied in 30 m to an hour via my studies. I am wondering how much time it spends diurnally roosting or hiding in a cavity.
The few people on the few birds have gotten secretive with reason on where the hot spots are. Even if you get a location it is like chasing a moving needle in a hay stack.

As someone who actually has extensive field experience of Campephilus woodpeckers I can assure you that they are are not hard to find when they actually exist, they don't move around huge territories and they are noisy and obvious. The team that rediscovered the Singer Tract birds took 3 days to find a nest and got fantastic documentation with primitive equipment 85 years ago.

"After three days in the swamp, the team found an Ivory-billed Woodpecker nest. They set up camp and captured motion picture footage and sound recordings of the woodpeckers. A few years later, James Tanner began a study of Ivory-bills as part of his Ph.D. dissertation and eventually wrote an in-depth report, funded by the National Audubon Society, that was later published as The Ivory-billed Woodpecker. His report estimated that only 22 to 24 of the birds remained in the United States."

The last bird was itself reliable and easy to find up until its death in 1944 and easy to document in much the same way as what was potentially the endling Imperial Woodpecker.

Inventing mythology about the species being difficult to find might serve your lost cause but it looks a bit silly. Too funny as you say.
 
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1TruthSeeker

Well-known member
Zander talk about classical avoidance behavior to try and lessen your beating----- you are a poster boy. But you are only drawing blaring attention to the scientific holes in the skeptical stance, and you force me to say this........your immature, personality quirks. Collins was talking about you.

You have been respectfully asked 3 times to comment on the main AR and LA Ivory-billed evidence especially the multiple videos, kent, calls, DKs, etc. This IS the primal evidence. An average poster would know these need to be completely addressed, and successfully disparaged before you attack pertinent sighters' ability to ID the only Campephilus in N. America.

Your laughable strategy of attacking every single person with a sighting as mistaken, siding with MARSH ducky flaps, big cats in the UK, then moving on to name dropping and resume-chest thumping, is telling. It's all a sophomoric attempt at a text book, black op. But you can't display all your best tricks in one post......it needs to have some lengthy phenology------ you have embarrassingly wet your bed. MI6 is cringing......and all within a week of Sean Connery's death.

We are not horney, small brained Paradise Birds mesmerized by your gyrations. It all looks like a version of a middle-aged tantrum to get attention.

You know very little about the IB or PIWO. Please stay 2 meters away.

thanks
 
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1TruthSeeker

Well-known member
Hi,


Thanks a lot, I wasn't aware of that. The duck wing sounds mentioned in your link are the acoustic equivalent of an optical mis-indentification of a visually similar species, and I'm not surprised that would happen as the "mundane" species/sound is going to occur a lot more often than the near-extinct (in the best case) Ivory-billed Woodpecker or its double rap.

Regards,

Henning

Henning there were no or very very few DKs misidentified:

Again:

PIWO cannot fly as seen in all the pertinent videos of IB; its impossible. THERE ARE NO PIWO VIDEOS OF THE SEVERAL THOUSAND that match the subject IB videos.

In the AR video before the flight sequence there is a 20 inch tall bird clinging to a trunk, with a white Campephilus wing saddle. It doesn't get much easier. This is often missed, but the bird is there on a tree and then gone from the same tree soon after.

After totally skipping the video evidence you note a poor, vague, misleading paper on duck clap sounds, that tries to, but does not confuse even a small part of the IB data (assuming you know your field sounds/conditions and zoogeographic distribution of Anatidae in the US).. I have never heard any duck wing claps in IB habitat or any marsh. waterbody and besides there would also be other duck noises/vocals on the ARU. IB ARU were set up in forest where Gadwalls etc, are not found. Some ARU DKs do not match the duck wing bangs. DK evidence also included human detection of Camp-like DKs that came from different areas over short time periods where no Gadwalls were noted

Ducks were absent or scarce in the immediate AR area and are not common at all on the Choctaw of FL where many more DKs were recorded along with very good sightings. The DKs were recorded in dry forest and wet forest. Gadwalls are not found there. Wood Ducks are in both AR and FL but I see no data on that these small ducks produce these alleged wing clap sounds that ARs record like Camp. DKs. Regardless DKs were heard by many people and kents, including me, from DIFFERENT LOCATIONS within a 15 minute period . Ducks do not produce loud kents nor do nuthatches with the volume that IBs are capable of. DKs that I have heard in 7 countries do not sound like duck wing claps that I read about and have heard . Some ARU DKs were triangulated by human observers, they were Camp. like with strong volume, from forest where there are no Gadwalls or other ducks and were unlike any alleged duck clap sounds.

Many kents were also recorded in at least FL (a few maybe in LA, AR also).

Almost all field birders can distinguish a Camp. DK from duck wings. The opinion that the AR DK data should be thrown is not supported if every 2004-5 DK is carefully taken in field context and habitat context.

You avoid several written field note submittals, as mistakes, and a no mistake video of a flying bird,, and the same bird perched (a woodpecker) matching IB in all ways and settle on a misleading paper of duck claps. LOL
 

ZanderII

Well-known member
Zander talk about classical avoidance behavior to try and lessen your beating----- you are a poster boy. But you are only drawing blaring attention to the scientific holes in the skeptical stance, and you force me to say this........your immature, personality quirks. Collins was talking about you.

You have been respectfully asked 3 times to comment on the main AR and LA Ivory-billed evidence especially the multiple videos, kent, calls, DKs, etc. This IS the primal evidence. An average poster would know these need to be completely addressed, and successfully disparaged before you attack pertinent sighters' ability to ID the only Campephilus in N. America.

Your laughable strategy of attacking everyone involved as mistaken in the field, siding with ducky flaps, big cats, then moving on to name dropping and then resume-chest thumping is telling. It's all a sophomoric attempt at a text book, black op. But you can't display all your best tricks in one post......it needs to have some lengthy phenology------ you have wet the bed. MI6 is cringing......and all within a week of Sean Connery's death.

We are not horney, small brained Paradise Birds. It all looks like a version of a middle-aged tantrum to get attention.

You know very little about the IB. Please stay 2 meters away.

thanks
Lol. You said I was peripheral, I have given you some food for thought. Comment on the evidence? Not good enough. Not one unambiguous image, video or sound-recording, again read my post, the humble Singer Tract team took 3 days to find a nest. In years of searching no-one has come up with a piece of unambiguous evidence and if so eBird would have contemporary rich media for this long-extinct species.

Off to do some black op stuff now in Bigfoot forums.
 

ZanderII

Well-known member
Hi,



Sorry, I don't read acronymese.

You seem to be very familiar with the specifics of Mike's work. Were you involved in his fieldwork, I wonder?

Regards,

Henning
DK is 'double knock' I'd imagine, the drumming of this species is two loud raps which is audible from a very long range and aids with the species' detection. Playback of this and the calls will bring them steaming in. Obviously people tried this but none responded because...
 

Hauksen

Forum member
Hi,

DK is 'double knock' I'd imagine, the drumming of this species is two loud raps which is audible from a very long range and aids with the species' detection.

Thank you!,"DK" was just the first of many, I just meant to avoid quoting the entire post.

Playback of this and the calls will bring them steaming in.

It would be quite ironic if acousting monitoring picked up playbacks from search parties ... do you know if there are any safeguards against this?

Regards,

Henning
 

ZanderII

Well-known member
Many kents were also recorded in at least FL (a few maybe in LA, AR also).
All the more reason to suspect that these are all Red-breasted Nuthatches. Care to point me to an archived IBWO call? Do you really think IBWO is widespread across 3 US states? I understand that you have devoted a substantial part of your life to this and evidently lots of fieldwork but stand back and be objective and listen to yourself. Claiming the species is more widespread just makes the claims even more unlikely.
 

ZanderII

Well-known member
Hi,



Thank you!,"DK" was just the first of many, I just meant to avoid quoting the entire post.



It would be quite ironic if acousting monitoring picked up playbacks from search parties ... do you know if there are any safeguards against this?

Regards,

Henning
No idea. But the folks searching knew what they were doing and the Cornell website said no definitive documentation was obtained. They drew a line in the sand, left a bit of face-saving ambiguity; because as truth-seeker says there is some ambiguous evidence and then shut the door.

ARU = autonomous recording unit
IB = Ivory-billed
+ state names
 

Patudo

Well-known member
Having read a large portion of the previous very lengthy thread with interest, I'd be grateful if someone could offer a knowledgeable opinion on the following:

  • Extent of suitable habitat - how does this compare now, across the ivory-bill's range, to when the last birds were unambiguously recorded, back in the mid-1940s?
  • Observer coverage/effort - roughly what percentage of suitable habitat would be covered by observers, and roughly how many observers per square kilometre / observer days in the field per year might there likely be?

Regards,

patudo
 

ZanderII

Well-known member
Having read a large portion of the previous very lengthy thread with interest, I'd be grateful if someone could offer a knowledgeable opinion on the following:

  • Extent of suitable habitat - how does this compare now, across the ivory-bill's range, to when the last birds were unambiguously recorded, back in the mid-1940s?
  • Observer coverage/effort - roughly what percentage of suitable habitat would be covered by observers, and roughly how many observers per square kilometre / observer days in the field per year might there likely be?

Regards,

patudo
Hi Patudo, good questions, the drivers for the species extinction were habitat loss and for the last few hunting for trophies. It was an old growth specialist and essentially most large contiguous blocks were logged indeed this was the fate of the last redoubt at the Singer Tract leading to the species extinction in the US. Loss of habitat later did the same for the Cuban population.

Observer coverage variable, high during the searches but low before and after. Although not to the extent that the species would evade detection for decades and decades. Modelling studies indicate that little suitable habitat remains in the original range e.g. https://www.sciencedirect.com/scien...nVig9LxO2eEgDxoUz_otQU3RAAIKTSVRhl5yjb8_Zi_hw
 

ZanderII

Well-known member
Having read a large portion of the previous very lengthy thread with interest, I'd be grateful if someone could offer a knowledgeable opinion on the following:

  • Extent of suitable habitat - how does this compare now, across the ivory-bill's range, to when the last birds were unambiguously recorded, back in the mid-1940s?
  • Observer coverage/effort - roughly what percentage of suitable habitat would be covered by observers, and roughly how many observers per square kilometre / observer days in the field per year might there likely be?

Regards,

patudo
Most of this is dealt with here too in much more detail by the world expert in the species:

 

birdmeister

Well-known member
United States
Hello BM, the latest sighting is only a few months old and was visual but was by a layman/beginner and written up with an emphasis on what a PIWO looks like w/o much on what was actually seen. On a scale of 1 to 10 on habitat, location, likelihood of being true, veracity of report I would go 4, 3, 1 and 2. Their have been burns over the last few years in area, which does make me curious.

I coudl find out more if you have a need to know.

tks
Thanks for that! Kind of as I feared, though it sounds like it's an extremely tough bird to come across anyway.

I'm not sure there are any left, as I would really love to see a clearer picture or video.
 

1TruthSeeker

Well-known member
Having read a large portion of the previous very lengthy thread with interest, I'd be grateful if someone could offer a knowledgeable opinion on the following:

  • Extent of suitable habitat - how does this compare now, across the ivory-bill's range, to when the last birds were unambiguously recorded, back in the mid-1940s?
  • Observer coverage/effort - roughly what percentage of suitable habitat would be covered by observers, and roughly how many observers per square kilometre / observer days in the field per year might there likely be?

Regards,

patudo
Patudo,


Much has happened in the last few and 8 decades.

Best to get away from the old acre to modern acre comparison as far as total acres involved. Todays forests have greatly changed for the worse in many ways; I will not cover much here. Ecological changes and fire regimes need to be paramount in understanding IBs. Also alarming is metapopulation gene flow is now minimal but can be improved. The IB is very vagile.

As an indicator something is wrong since forest acreage has remained fairly constant over this time, see: forest usa

Reality is that you no longer need to consider for survey every suitable IB acre or range. If you know the modern IB's ecology, probable population numbers and behavior, location gen, and have accurately surveyed over 100,000 acres like we have then you already know the best habitat types, and scale of the study areas you need to survey.

Therefore in the past we have found IBs on multiple trips usually requiring a week at each large ecosystem's core area to hear a bird. Trips to areas with large expanses of even age forest < 70 years old, of low DBH and low standing dead wood has all failed. But these areas of over 20,000 acres can not be completely written off since we only spent ~ week in the large areas and only surveyed half the area for example. Statistically you have over a 50% chance of missing the birds even if present. Area thsi alrg eAreas with limited plant community diversity should be avoided unless standing dead wood is substantial. Planted forest should be avoided.

These large areas are presently not covered in any one year by any organized group of IB searchers and accidental/unexpected sightings, ambient DKs and kents are very rarely reported. Regardless there are people there and any population of even 50 birds would likely result in a bird being accidentally seen each year This all says something .

Point being that there are millions of acres of suitable habitat but only the best remaining habitat is presently occupied by only a few birds. There is limited metapopulation gene flow. The breeding phenology of the IBs as a species vis a vis forest carrying capacity has changed; the large fires of 100,000 or more acres that resulted in historical reports of several pairs of IBs in a relatively small area are mostly gone. IB populations a few years after these past events could likely triple on a local level with excess males providing the outbreeding mechanism to keep populations genetically healthy for decades. Excess females in the good times would build the population on the peripheral area of its relatives usually. In this way metapopulations interacted with the entire population blanketing the forest with at least some bird almost everywhere.

Note that much of the SE US forest acreage is privately owned. Some of this is owned by lumber and oil companies, other industries, real estate, hunt clubs, farmers, food/grain companies and private citizens. It can't be searched although you can ask permission or be a persistent and very risky scofflaw to get a look. This is dangerous.

I have seen a few isolated 10,000 acre patches that need searching from top surveyors with advanced search techniques but permission was denied. About 50% of owners minimum, do not want you finding an endangered species on their property. I have also run into a few meth labs while searching. On a private patch that had past IB occupancy we found great signs of very recent IB presence but logging had driven the birds away.

There was extensive logging in LA from both ends of the state that began in 1880 until the sweep was completed in the '40s. By the time they finished of course there were 60 - 80 year old stands somewhere else in the state. Today there are expansive but even aged stands of forest that go on for many, many miles. Look at Dewey Mills for an example.

It is important to know ID (in dike) and OD (out of dike) acreage since cypress habitat (mainly OD) will not provide as much carrying capacity as the second bottoms ecotone that IBs prefer. I bring this up because the Atchafalaya Basin is the largest swamp bottomland left in the USA at ~ 1,000,000 acres but it is partially or mostly Cypress dominated OD. Cypress is protected by natural insecticides and long ago forests of huge trees likely provided sturdy nest holes.

The Choctaw FL IB study found many likely IB roosts in older cypress that no doubt accumulate over centuries. Trees and even better, groups of trees with many holes no doubt make it that much harder for rat snakes to find eggs/hatchlings.

In LA you also get a good input of topped trees and suspended dead wood from hurricanes. The forests are "spooky", crooked and dense in these areas. But as coastal areas are developed the forests most prone to catastrophic tree mortality are under pressure and this prime area for IBs (see Avery Island literature) is attrited.

In summary very little acreage is now correctly covered for IBs but regardless there are likely not many birds if we extrapolate our direct data and bring in other date we feel was done right . The hours and man days to cover the best 10 separate spots that recently had IBs is 20 complete weeks with 4 people/day. That would settle the question or at least bring us up to date.

I Screen-Shot-2015-03-08-at-2_47_17-PM.png would be shocked if there were no birds left.

thanks

hope that helps
 
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1TruthSeeker

Well-known member
All the more reason to suspect that these are all Red-breasted Nuthatches. Care to point me to an archived IBWO call? Do you really think IBWO is widespread across 3 US states? I understand that you have devoted a substantial part of your life to this and evidently lots of fieldwork but stand back and be objective and listen to yourself. Claiming the species is more widespread just makes the claims even more unlikely.

Someone please tell this "expert" :rolleyes:that the confusing species is the White -breasted Nuthatch not the Red-breasted as he states . The Red-breasted nuthatch is not even a sympatric breeder with the IB even if it sounded like it !!

Its understandable his knowledge of IB is limited but the Red-breasted is a fairly common feeder bird in the USA and Canada....and he worked at Cornell.

Auburn University and Windsor U. personnel recorded multiple IB kent calls, see their paper and website circa 2006 about substantial Ivory-billed evidence. Many people ticked off the IB there. It's was a memorable month when I heard IB kents, IB DKs and a Red-breasted Nuthatch (not there) later in the same month.

Even dogs are said to dream so there is hope for some , at least on the nuthatches .
 
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1TruthSeeker

Well-known member
DK is 'double knock' I'd imagine, the drumming of this species is two loud raps which is audible from a very long range and aids with the species' detection. Playback of this and the calls will bring them steaming in. Obviously people tried this but none responded because...
Anthropomorphic DKs (ADKs ADKs ADKs) were used in the US from the Civil War at least until post US/World depression by subsistence hunters down S during hard times. Starvation was real in the S. Birds would either come closer to the source or give their ~ location up, the hunter would do what he had to. See Dr. Hill, Auburn U., its in the literature. IBs are said to be good eating which makes sense when compared to Pileated which consume ants..

This might be termed lethal selection pressure; what do you think? Do you understand that IB never came in again to an ADK?

As this occurred decade after decade in some areas do you think successive generations of IBs were more likely or less likely to respond to ADKs ?

Hunting is a non-stochastic event; a substantial and rapid driver for altering animal behavior.

Most New World Campephilus experts know that hunting pressure was much greater on N taxa than the S congeneric taxa. I have eaten armadillo, Orinoco goose, caiman, etc., but never Powerful Woodpecker.

I guess the underwater cable to that island is out again. :eek:
 
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1TruthSeeker

Well-known member
Changes in flush distances and wariness due to predation (hunting in the IB case) have hundreds of articles/examples in the peer-reviewed literature. The N clade of Camphephilus has suffered human predation. The IB suffered intensely, see Noel Synder monogram on IB.





An alternative hypothesis for the cause of the ivory-billed woodpecker's decline / by Noel F.R. Snyder | Smithsonian Institution





Here are other references found in a few minutes:


Predator lethality, optimal escape behavior, and autotomy | Behavioral Ecology | Oxford Academic (oup.com)



Predator lethality, optimal escape behavior, and autotomy​




Escape Behavior and Predation Risk of Mainland and Island Spiny‐tailed Iguanas (Ctenosaura hemilopha) - Blázquez - 1997 - Ethology - Wiley Online Library



Escape Behavior and Predation Risk of Mainland and Island Spiny‐tailed Iguanas (Ctenosaura hemilopha)​

 
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