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

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Farnboro John

Well-known member
I guess to be able to instantly point the camera at a bird when paddling. You don't want to first put the paddle down, then reach for your camera, switch it on, focus, etc. So have the camera on the paddle, pre-focussed at 50m and camera continuously running, so the IBWO won't be missed if spotted. I like this setup :)
If the guy was really smart he'd have the camera on a helmet so it points where he looks. Trying to point a camera on a round-shafted paddle held by two widely spaced wet hands (I used to be a canoeist) is lunacy. Its a rubbish set-up.

John
 

ZanderII

Well-known member
Good point.



Well, you will need the scientists once DNA samples or other solid evidence has been obtained. Speaking of which, where are the DNA samples? It's not even like you'd have to trap or shoot the birds - if a species is extant, there should be some feathers or excrement lying around, or even carcasses left by predators of the species.
DNA samples obtained from specimens to permit eDNA sampling or testing of any candidate feathers or excrement - https://royalsocietypublishing.org/doi/abs/10.1098/rsbl.2006.0490 unfortunately no such candidate samples were IBWOs.
 

Sangahyando

Well-known member
DNA samples obtained from specimens to permit eDNA sampling or testing of any candidate feathers or excrement - https://royalsocietypublishing.org/doi/abs/10.1098/rsbl.2006.0490 unfortunately no such candidate samples were IBWOs.
Thanks. On a different note, I assume there are museum specimens though - would it be possible to bring back the species via cloning? Normally I'd prefer conservation efforts over that experimental route, but seeing as the species cannot be found anymore...
 

ZanderII

Well-known member
Thanks. On a different note, I assume there are museum specimens though - would it be possible to bring back the species via cloning? Normally I'd prefer conservation efforts over that experimental route, but seeing as the species cannot be found anymore...
De-extinction might bring something back but it won't be the same animal and the habitat has largely gone. Many (most?) Conservation Biologists don't like the idea.
 

Mysticete

Well-known member
United States
I think we are a long way from being able to make clones based on feathers or hair.

The bigger issue is, if you did clone them...Is the habitat intact enough to support a viable population? There are probably better candidates out there for reintroduction if you COULD do that (Carolina Parakeet for instance).
 

Andy Adcock

Well-known member
England
I think we are a long way from being able to make clones based on feathers or hair.

The bigger issue is, if you did clone them...Is the habitat intact enough to support a viable population? There are probably better candidates out there for reintroduction if you COULD do that (Carolina Parakeet for instance).
Can you even create a 'sustainable' population with such limited, DNA material, I suppose if there are a couple of dozen IbW with viable materials, it could work?

As a lay person, how do you create an entity, without ova or sperm, can a blank ova be created and the desired DNA inserted, how would it go?
 

opisska

Jan Ebr
Poland
As far as I know, all such attempts ever tried/considered were "find a similar enough species, insert the desired DNA into their egg cells".
 

raymie

Well-known member
United States
I'm against the use of cloning in conservation in general, but even so there is no suitable habitat out there for these theoretical birds to be introduced to.
 

Diane D

Well-known member
United States
I agree that references to bigfoot/ yetis are a bit misplaced because with Ivory-billed Woodpecker we at least know for a fact that it DID exist in the past.

However, extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence and I haven't seen even a vaguely recognisable picture.
Hi, the first time I saw the luneau video it was pretty obvious it showed a lot of white on both surfaces of the wing and it was flying different than any pileated woodpecker I had ever seen. Then I was fortunate enough to see the same video on a larger screen and darn it really looks like an ivory bill since you could again see the extent of the white more easily.
 

Diane D

Well-known member
United States
I'm against the use of cloning in conservation in general, but even so there is no suitable habitat out there for these theoretical birds to be introduced to.
There are many many acres of suitable habitat with a caveat on suitable.

Since the species is not been reproducing well as far as can be told......... The habitat has to be managed a lot more than they've done in the past. Review of data on large woodpeckers directly showed that as the age of the forest decreased woodpeckers would increase their range.

And Ivory bill pair might likely need 20 to 50 square miles in today's basically unmanaged "for Ivory bill" forests.
 

raymie

Well-known member
United States
There are many many acres of suitable habitat with a caveat on suitable.

Since the species is not been reproducing well as far as can be told......... The habitat has to be managed a lot more than they've done in the past. Review of data on large woodpeckers directly showed that as the age of the forest decreased woodpeckers would increase their range.

And Ivory bill pair might likely need 20 to 50 square miles in today's basically unmanaged "for Ivory bill" forests.
Ivory-bills require old growth, not enough old growth forests still exist anymore in the SE United States. There may be some suitable habitat in Cuba.
 

Diane D

Well-known member
United States
Ivory-bills require old growth, not enough old growth forests still exist anymore in the SE United States. There may be some suitable habitat in Cuba.
I think that's partial story but not in all situations..... I don't think either species its an obligate old growth species but rather obligative to forest with a high concentration of standing deadwood less than 3 years post mortem. In other words if there is good standing deadwood ib can survive .

In 1995 the studies in Cuba concluded they could find no ivy bills near where they were found in 87. They also specifically said there is no virgin Forest acreage left of any consequence in that surrounding arearera. They did mention there is some virgin forest in the Sierra maestras but the woodpecker was never found in many decades or even from pre colonial contact time there.
 

Sangahyando

Well-known member
I think we are a long way from being able to make clones based on feathers or hair.

The bigger issue is, if you did clone them...Is the habitat intact enough to support a viable population? There are probably better candidates out there for reintroduction if you COULD do that (Carolina Parakeet for instance).
My approach would be to restore the habitat as well as possible (which will take time, obviously), and then wait for one of two things to happen - either future generations with more advanced technology being able to "bring back" the IBWO, or a population of an extant species (e.g. Pileated Woodpecker) evolving to fill the niche.
 

Hauksen

Forum member
Hi,

Hi, the first time I saw the luneau video it was pretty obvious it showed a lot of white on both surfaces of the wing and it was flying different than any pileated woodpecker I had ever seen.

Do you happen to have a link to the Luneau video?

Regards,

Henning
 

ZanderII

Well-known member
You do realize this is almost identical in rhetoric to what I hear from bigfoot hunter and similar fringe science believers. They don't need to discredit anything...the burden of proof is on the person claiming the continued existence of Ivory-billed Woodpeckers
"Belief in the persistence of the Ivory-bill was positively correlated with belief in the continued existence of the Eskimo Curlew, the Bachman’s Warbler, Bigfoot, and the Loch Ness Monster. Of course, the three bird species formerly occurred in well documented numbers, whereas the latter two creatures are now widely regarded as mythical. Such a correlation was earlier predicted by Laurie Binford (in Gallagher 2005:130). Birders and ornithologists alike were considerably more skeptical of the existence of Bigfoot and the Loch Ness Monster than were physical anthropologists in 1978 (13% believed in Bigfoot, 23% in the Loch Ness Monster; Greenwell and King 1981), university students in 1983 (3% believed strongly in Bigfoot, 5% in the Loch Ness Monster; Feder 1984), teens in 1985 (24% believed in Bigfoot; Gallup 1985), and the general public in 2006 (18% believed “creatures like Bigfoot and the Loch Ness Monster will one day be discovered”; Adams et al. 2006)."

 

Diane D

Well-known member
United States
My approach would be to restore the habitat as well as possible (which will take time, obviously), and then wait for one of two things to happen - either future generations with more advanced technology being able to "bring back" the IBWO, or a population of an extant species (e.g. Pileated Woodpecker) evolving to fill the niche.
I worked at one of the most famous museums in the USA and handled various extinct skins and other ones that needed attention. Arsenic was used liberally on skins. It is known to damage or denature DNA and other organic material other organic material .

I imagine there must be some recoverable DNA somewhere though with all these skins and of course there's always still a chance of netting a live bird.

Another bizarre thing about the luneau video that is difficult for skeptics to convincingly explain is the presence of a correctly sized bird on a tree within feet of the tree where the flight sequence starts.

It's beyond a billion in one shot if the bird is a pileated to have a bird with a large white lower wing saddle, 20 inch tall on a tree before a sequence comes out with a bird that looks more like an ivy build and not like pileated.

I'll give anyone $50,000 usd if they can get any blurry video that looks like the Lanai video and is not an ivory bill. That's a fair offer it'll pay for a lot of years of kayak rental and you all like the bird anyway I assume. Great..,.. it's all settled then.!!
 

Diane D

Well-known member
United States
"Belief in the persistence of the Ivory-bill was positively correlated with belief in the continued existence of the Eskimo Curlew, the Bachman’s Warbler, Bigfoot, and the Loch Ness Monster. Of course, the three bird species formerly occurred in well documented numbers, whereas the latter two creatures are now widely regarded as mythical. Such a correlation was earlier predicted by Laurie Binford (in Gallagher 2005:130). Birders and ornithologists alike were considerably more skeptical of the existence of Bigfoot and the Loch Ness Monster than were physical anthropologists in 1978 (13% believed in Bigfoot, 23% in the Loch Ness Monster; Greenwell and King 1981), university students in 1983 (3% believed strongly in Bigfoot, 5% in the Loch Ness Monster; Feder 1984), teens in 1985 (24% believed in Bigfoot; Gallup 1985), and the general public in 2006 (18% believed “creatures like Bigfoot and the Loch Ness Monster will one day be discovered”; Adams et al. 2006)."

Above in links provided by others is a capture
of the bird clinging to the side of the tree with the white saddle...... Taken right before a bird clinging to another tree takes off with a lot of white and saddle. Woopee
 

RafaelMatias

Unknown member
Portugal
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