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A guide to the world’s biggest flightless birds. Residents of Hertfordshire in England may have gotten a glimpse of an unusual site in the last few weeks — a large, flightless bird called a greater rhea that looks somewhat like an ostrich.

A guide to the world’s biggest flightless birds

The female, named Rita (and nicknamed Chris by locals after English singer-songwriter Chris Rea), escaped from captivity last month and has been on the loose ever since. She’s been spotted wandering canola fields and as of last weekend had apparently taken up residence on a golf course. Locals are threatening to shoot the three-year-old big bird, but her owner hopes to lure her back home with her favorite dog food. Her owner thinks Rita may just be looking for a mate. Bird and moon. Wildlife rehabbers: you can download this chart in funny (PDF) and serious (PDF) versions to print out!

bird and moon

If it's useful and you're able to, you can support me by buying something from my store. Birds. Identifying Cooper's and Sharp-shinned Hawks. Identification tips There are lots of field marks to distinguish these hawks, although some are judgment calls (such as size) and some require a certain perspective (front or back of bird).

Identifying Cooper's and Sharp-shinned Hawks

The best way to distinguish Sharp-shinned from Cooper's hawks is to try to gather as many field marks as possible. Here are some key field marks to look for first: With all plumages, Cooper's Hawks are barrel shaped, with the width of the chest fairly close in size to the width of the hips and the largest portion of the chest about halfway down the body. Sharp-shinned Hawks, on the other hand, are widest at the shoulder and get distinctly narrower down to the hips. More identification tips and challenges can be seen on the Accipiter Photo Gallery page. Did you know? FeederWatch data shows that accipiters, especially Cooper's Hawks, are becoming more common around feeder areas. Additional resources. Crow info. So, you want to know more about CROWS?

crow info

Good for you. Crows are fascinating animals. Follow the links below to find out why I think so. News about crows and the West Nile Virus. More about McGowan's crow study. How to interpret the tags, as well as how to report sightings. Frequently Asked Questions about Crows Selected References on the American Crow, Corvus brachyrhynchos Return to Kevin J. Bad photos of Good Birds. Confusing Domestic Ducks. Confusing Domestic Ducks (and hybrids) Pictures taken with an Olympus D-450, D-40, or Sony Sureshot digital camera through a Swarovski HD80 or Swarovski AT80 spotting scope.

Confusing Domestic Ducks

All photos © Kevin and Jay McGowan, unless otherwise noted. Odd Ducks By Kevin J. McGowan (First published in the Cayuga Bird Club Newsletter, February and March 2006) What is that strange looking duck? It’s a domestic duck. This is probably the most common answer to most beginning birder’s duck problems. Mallard breeds can be somewhat confusing. It’s an exotic duck. Ducks are good fliers, and some fly long distances in migration. It’s a hybrid duck. Male ducks provide no parental care, and female ducks do not have to feed their young, just lead them around. It’s in eclipse plumage or transitioning out. Dabbling ducks are unusual in that the males have a very briefly held drab plumage in the summer, known as an “eclipse” plumage.

Look at this Baby Bird. Abirdnamedswoop: Swoop’s lil siblings are getting so cute!

Look at this Baby Bird

Reblogged 3 hours ago from lazuli-bunting (Originally from abirdnamedswoop) 206 notes Tagged: parrot, cockatiel, . Source: abirdnamedswoop childofthefoxes: Birds of a feather: Archive. Prehistoric Birds. It’s for our convenience, basically.

Prehistoric Birds

Like I’m always emphasizing, there’s no real dividing line between “bird” and “non-bird dinosaur”, but for ease of classification we draw one in ourselves. I often see paleontology bloggers use “bird” to pretty much mean “member of Avialae”, which (possibly) includes Archaeopteryx, hence why we call it a “bird” but not deinonychosaurs like Microraptor. Anchiornis is tough to classify because it’s so basal and thus very similar to the most recent common ancestor of troodontids and birds. It’s a common problem when it comes to classifying basal organisms. We’ve had the same trouble with Eoraptor, one of the earliest dinosaurs—is it a theropod?

eBird. Pelagic birding in eBird Ahoy mateys!


Have you ever wondered how to enter your checklists from pelagic trips? Will you be going on a pelagic trip this summer that you plan to enter in eBird? Birding at sea has some challenges that are different from birding on land, but many of the fundamental issues are the same. Birds still have their favorite habitats. Robert Sams, March 2014 eBirder of the Month We are thrilled to congratulate Robert Sams, of Findlay, Ohio, as the winner of the March eBirder of the Month Challenge, sponsored by Carl Zeiss Sports Optic.

New Big Day route for Team Sapsucker The annual Big Day fundraiser is hugely important to eBird and the Cornell Lab of Ornithology. A New “eBird Festival” Elevates Bird Conservation in the Pacific Northwest Migration watch–The April Zeiss eBirder of the Month challenge This month’s eBirder of the month challenge, sponsored by Carl Zeiss Sports Optic, focuses on migration birding. Introducing the eBird Location Explorer! Birds of Orange County, California. Scottish Birds Photo Gallery by Ian Fulton at pbase.