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You mention Duluth MN, but there are lotrs of Bald Eagles in Northeast Wisconsin. 30 plus years ago a science teacher worked with the electric utility to build a nestingplatform at 1000 Islands near Kaukuana, WI. Today there are many eagles in the eara. It’s not uncommon now to see them in and around the city of Appleton. The
Fox river has open water most of the winter and the birdsthink that’s just great.
Very cute!!! And I agree completely! hehe
Note how this speed competition between the Eurasian hare and the North American cottontail demonstrate how the [true!] theory of evolution works: the swifter the predators, the swifter and more alert the prey-animals must be.
We can predict that the Eurasian hares’ ancestors had to deal with predators who ran very swiftly indeed—whether or not that predator is still around; rather like the situation of the American pronghorn “antelope,” very swift but unnecessarily so, given the latest bunch of predators: presumably its recent ancestors evolved such remarkable swiftness because it was being routinely pursued by a now-extinct North American cheetah. —Gevalt!
The rabbits are in it for the pension. They’re part of the Christmas Elves Union…they’ve negotiated fantastic benefits.
I just loved this adorable piece on the Easter Rabbit. Thanks very much!
I put up a Wood Duck house 2 years ago after seeing a pair on my shore. Lake Barkley is controlled by the corp of engineers and the water can rise significantly when there are heavy rains farther south. I knew how high the water had risen in the past and was careful to put the duck house well above the past year water mark. Unfortunately, I did not prepare for the 100 year flood in Nashville which caused our water to rise well above the roof of the duck house. This year the house was occupied by Screech Owls. I had checked the box a couple of weeks before the flood and the mom was there with 6 eggs. The water rose just about the time the eggs were due to hatch and unfortunately, all eggs or hatch-lings were destroyed.
HI WHAT CAN YOU TELL ME ABOUT MEXICAN THREE DUCKS,
THEY ALL LIVE ON THREE TOPS BY THE RIVER. THEY’RE CALLED ” PICHIHUILAS ” (Dendrocygna autumnalis)
( Dendrocygna bicolor ) i have them in my place by the thousands, here in Los Mochis Sinaloa, Mexico. on the west coast of Mexico.
At Wing Shooters Paradise, Gun Club.
About 15 years ago a wood duck family set up housekeeping in an enormous ash tree in our back yard. Mom brought out the babies on a Saturday while my husband and I and two or three of our cats were working nearby. The first ducking bailed out and made a soft landing on a sleeping tomcat under the tree, fortunately scaring him so throughly that he headed for the house. As another ducking landed near by, we realized what was going on and grabbed that kitty and his pals and put them all inside, while mom duck stood by, watching the kids bail out.
Mom headed due south,with most of them in tow. a couple of the headed around the other side of the garage and we attempted to steer them back to mom’s parade at the back of our garage. We watched them march away across the neighbors’ back yard, hopefully to find water. The nearest that we knew of is that direction is in a park a mile or more away. Incidentally the hollow in the tree was probably 20 feet in the air. The tree was latter hollowed out almost completely by carpenter ants and had to be removed.
This was a truly amazing thing to watch, I do hope that they made it!
Interesting! I hope that everyone has a nice Memorial Day.
thats so kool question there was a butterfly that can still fly but has a messed up wing i was in my back yard bc im 11 should i have done something
The markings of the non-venomous Kingsnakes often cause them to be mistaken for corals. However, they are the “good guys,” keeping the corals and others at bay and generally patrolling their territories for intruders, etc.
Use of any kind of band or suction device as “first aid” for snakebite is not a good idea—the Sawyer Extractor has been shown to be ineffective, and the constricting band may be useful for certain Australian ans African snake bites but not for the bites of US pit vipers. The only useful first aid devices for snakebite are the car keys, to transport the victim to the nearest emergency room. “First aid” takes time better spent transporting the victim.
Sean is right, but I’ll add that the best first aid kit for venomous snakebite is a cell phone. Keep the victim still and call 911. EMS providers in most areas can give intravenous fluids and pain medicine - and, while extremely rare - some snakebite victims may develop airway swelling or shock. In addition, by calling EMS, the responding team can make sure you get to the nearest appropriate hospital, which may not necessarily be the nearest emergency department. Some hospitals, even in areas that have lots of venomous snakes, do not stock antivenom, and if they do, they may have a limited supply. Some patients with serious envenomations, extremes of age, or underlying medical problems may require specialize care - not just antivenom - that may not be available at the nearest hospital, and in many parts of the country, getting there fast could mean a helicopter ride.
While pressure bandages are standard with elapid envenomings in other parts of the world, they should NOT be used on any North American snakebite by a crotalid - that is, a copperhead, water mocassin, or rattlesnake. You should NOT place any kind of tourniquet or constricting band, nor should you apply ice, or a bandage. You should NOT use a suction snakebite kit such as the Sawyer Extractor. Venom suction snakebite kits don’t suck venom, they just suck - and in the case of Crotalid envenoming, they can worsen local tissue injury. Some snakebite experts even feel that taping a gauze sponge over the bite site with adhesive tape can result in worsen injury when the tape is ripped off - I prefer a dry gauze sponge placed over the bite site, not taped, and without any kind of pressure bandage. If the victim is bitten on the upper extremity, placing that arm in a sling is reasonable. Bottom line: if bitten by a venomous snake, get medical care promptly.
In North America, one antivenom (Crofab) is available for crotalid enevenomation. A newer antivenom for North American crotalid snakebite, AnaVip, is currently the subject of ongoing clinical trials. If you are bitten by a rattlesnake, copperhead, or water mocassin, then there is no need to waste time trying to identify the specific species as is described above.
I was bitten by a Copperhead while scraping leaves out of a birdbath with my hand. The snake was not visible and I did not anticipate finding a Copperhead there. I took the body minus the head of the snake to the ER with me and there was still a debate as to what kind of snake it was. I was treated with Crofab. That was several years ago and my finger is still numb from nerve damage.
I was surprised to see that you said rattlesnakes are mostly found in the extreme southwest. It is far from true.
Stating that the snakes aren’t in every state could cause people to not be as cautious as they should when out in the woods or grasslands.
“While most of the rattlers are concentrated in the southwestern United States, they extend north, east and south in diminishing numbers and varieties. Every contiguous state has one or more varieties of rattlesnake.
The rattlesnake is found in many different biomes ranging from along the coast at sea level, the inland prairies and desert areas to the mountains at elevations of more than 10,000 feet.”
I will give you a good example and that would be the “pygmy rattlesnake” who thrives in eastern Texas. I stopped to look at one on the road (thought it was dead) and it chased me to my truck. It was very small but I wasn’t going to stand there to see what would happen next. The Pygmy rattlesnake likes to climb up to about 4 feet in a tree and launch itself at it’s target. This information came from a state university’s research program. Weezilgirl
My ex is one of the foremost snake bite physicians in the southwest. His stance on any kind of suction device is do not use one.
Hmmmm, I think the original account stated (correctly) that SPECKLED rattlesnakes (Crotalus mitchelli and allied forms) occur primarily in the extreme southwest. That’s true—they occur from central Arizona and southwestern Nevada and Utah west to coastal southern California, and south throughout Baja California and on some of the islands in the Gulf of California. The allied form Crotalus stephensi (Panamint Rattlesnake) ranges from the Death Valley region north to southern Mono County in California east of the Sierra Nevada, then sparingly into Nevada.
About 15 other rattlesnake species and several subspecies occur throughout the continental US but have disappeared from Maine and New Hampshire. Five copperhead subspecies occur from Connecticut south to north Florida and west to southwest Texas, and the 2-3 cottonmouth subspecies range from Virginia south to southern Florida, west to mid-Texas, and north into southern Missouri, southern Illinois, and extreme southern Kansas. Eastern and Texas coral snakes range from coastal North Carolina south to southern Florida and west to mid-Texas, but north only within Alabama and Mississippi. The western (Arizona) coral snake is a very small species rarely capable of envenomating humans, and it ranges from extreme western New Mexico west through Arizona almost to California, and north in Arizona to the base of the central plateau. Thus, we have quite a variety of venomous snakes in the US but their track record for bites is good and for serious envenomations is great. Be careful though—snakebite is an affliction best avoided at all costs.
I have on my old eyeglasses. I may have missed that or misunderstood it.
My dog and I got into a creek in southeastern Oklahoma in 1999 and I saw some motion to my right. It was the biggest cottonmouth that I have ever seen. It was coiled and reared back with it’s mouth open. I very cautiously leaned sideways and got a rock and then held my dog by the collar and tossed the rock. It gave us time to get out of the creek and back into the truck. My dog would have attacked had I not held him. He was half airedale and half deerhound.
I’m moving back to the ranch but will not be getting into the creek again at that point.
I will not kill any snake unless I have to. I’ve killed one water moccasin. Nothing else.
That snake had to be the patriarch of Potts Creek.
I certainly agree with everything Scott wrote. However, eight of my eight favorite northern Californai fly-fishing streams are in lovely canyons with lots of trout, multitudes of rattlers, and no cell phone bars whatsoever (on the other hand I would be amazed if I ever found myself in a tight spot with a rattler—in 45 years of canyon haunting it hasn’t happened to me yet). I still carry the phone but I also carry the car keys—to my knowledge no hospital around here is better qualified than any other to treat snake bite and I believe that poison control centers are also clearing houses for the locations of antivenin supplies, at least in some regions. My advice is that if you are bitten by a venomous snake don’t let anyone come near you with a razor blade, a torniquet, a suction device, or a bag of ice (and don’t forget the dalliance into electric shock that enjoyed a very painful and useless vogue for a few years). My better advice is to avoid being bitten.
Keep these great stories and tutorials on snakes and snakebites coming. What a wealth of knowledge we have out there.
Here’s a little one from me:
I was swimming in our little family swimming hole in Peterson, Alabama (a few miles outside of Tuscaloosa), when, all of a sudden, there was a moccasin swimming beside me. I didn’t panic because our neighbour down the road Mr. Brown, had told be that a moccasin had to coil in order to deliver his bite. We swam together to the piling on out little pier and I shinnied up as quickly as I could. Then we said goodbye, the snake and I.
When I described the snake to Farmer Brown later that day, he told me it was a cotton mouth, and I did exactly what I should have done and he was proud of me.
Another time Farmer Brown had to kill a copperhead moccasin as it would not stay out of the Browns’ kitchen. He did the deed by beheading the snake with the edge of a shovel. He was sad to do it because it was a female and was ready to give birth, but he had to protect his wife and other family members. He said the snake would keep writhing until the sun when down, so my sisters and brother and I sat there until sunset and that snake never stopped moving until the rays of the sun had left the sky.
hey heres a story for ya a kid in my class was walking in his woods and he came across a snake but he got too close so it bite him he pulled back and it ripped some of his skin off
heres another one from my fourth grade teatcher
she was wlking in her woods a snake i forget the name of is but its one of the harmless ones it stated to spit at her then it puffed its chest up then it played dead so she picked it up and layed it on a hill and she sees it every once in a while
I’ve had years of experience with native and non-native venomous reptiles, primarilly snakes. I’ve never seen a pygmy rattlesnake strike downwards but I would expect ANY snake to do so if hunting or threatened. What I want to add to the information is that a snake on the ground can only strike out at a distance approximately equal to 1/3 of its body length. Be safe if you encounter one of our reptile friends and assume it will strike at least five feet from you. This is a more than generous estimate and should provide plenty of room to evacuate the area without serious encounter.
Per AnnMarie with Arizona’s Poison Control center, Cell phone, Car keys and water are the only “snakebite kit” a person should ever use. It is important to stay hydrated, especially in the desert southwest, so drinking WATER (not beer or anything else) is important. Use the car keys to get back into cell phone range so that you can call 911 asap.
Also, Sean Barry has posted very accurate information thus far. (Thank you)
One point I’d like to make regarding the post by David Bryant - Cro-fab is made of a complex of many different species of rattlesnake venom, it is NEVER necessary to bring the snake in for identification. In fact, with snake encounters in the wild, the first bite may have been a dry bite, but as it’s defending itself, it certainly will be unloading full venom yields with each subsequent bite, and with Cro-fab costing $1400 - 2000 per vial and in AZ most treatments start out at a dozen vials, it gets pretty expensive. Don’t kill a snake for just being true to its nature, it has a purpose in the biodiversity. Arizona is amazing in that, depending which herpetologist you ask, has 11 - 17 different species/subspecies of rattlesnake. I’ve had the pleasure of relocating 6 different species of rattlesnakes off people’s property to release in the nearby desert safely, with proper equipment and a Wildlife Services Permit. They are amazing, beautiful creatures. The (mitchelli) Speckled Rattlesnakes on South Mountain Park are especially beautiful.
Kat Parks, Arizona Herpetological Association
One other thing to point out:
“If you have a snakebite kit, wash the bite, and place the kit’s suction device over the bite. (Do not suck the poison out with your mouth.) Do not remove the suction device until you reach a medical facility.” AnnMarie with the AZ Poison control did say of all the “snake bite treatments” that stores still sell, this suction device is the best if you just feel the need to do “something” while on the way to the hospital, since it actually is the least damaging to the bite area. So, it’s best to do something that really amounts to nothing beyond calming your mind a little bit until real treatment can begin.
A pygmy rattlesnake is unlikely to “launch himself downward” out of a tree. Like most rattlesnakes, they are somewhat leery of falling and can be picked up on the end of a snake stick or other tool and will generally hold on. This is especially true of larger snakes. Neither do I believe that a pygmy rattler chased anyone to their car. This is a misinterpretation of the snake’s behavior.
Wasn’t disagreeing with your assertion about car keys. Many of the places we go here in Arizona have no cell service, but for the reasons I pointed out, calling for qualified help is the smartest thing to do. You are correct that your regional poison control center can direct you towards hospitals that stock antivenom, but managing a venomous snakebite is about much more than having antivenom available.
I have the utmost respect for our world class medical toxicologists and other staff in the poison center at Good Sam. If envenomated, there is no place I’d rather go and no group of medical toxicologists I’d rather be managed by. That said, I’m not sure why you put out for public view the statement “of all the ‘snake bite treatments’ that stores still sell, this suction device is the best if you just feel the need to do ‘something’ while on the way to the hospital, since it actually is the least damaging to the bite area.”
My first concern with your statement is that you vaguely refer to “the suction device” - inarguably one would describe both the older cut-and-suck style kits and the Sawyer Extractor as “suction devices” I’m sure Ann-Marie was referring to the Sawyer Extractor. My second concern is your assertion about using it not causing significant harm. In fact, this has been studied and a number of experts assert it can cause harm. In one study, volunteers were injected with simulated venom using a 16 ga needle and after a 3-minute delay, the Sawyer Extractor was applied. It sucked out some bloody fluid but none of the simulated venom. If you imagine a dose of venom being injected through much smaller needles (actual crote fangs), a very small actual cavity that is not perfectly straight is created. When the snake releases, the tissue through which the fangs traveled largely collapses onto itself. A cocktail of amazingly complex venom is deposited. Immediately, enzymes in the venom begin to, among other effects, lyse cells locally. The tissue bed immediately around the bite is vulnerable. Now, you apply suction to a vulnerable tissue bed - the suction itself distorts and damages the cells comprising that tissue bed, and outright ruptures many cells (imagine a hickey….) - problematically, that now injured tissue bed (from the suction) lies in the immediate of a remarkable toxin, and by applying suction you’ve actually caused injury to a vulnerable tissue bed which is now more readily injured by the venom, and if you actually do suck any venom, you are pulling it through an injured tissue bed - for no reason.
No one reading this should waste their money on any snakebite device - not even the Sawyer Extractor - and if bitten by a venomous snake in the United States, they should NOT use one. There is no benefit to this, and it may cause harm. Using the Saywer Extractor on a crotalid bite could theoretically injure tissue to the point that an area that would have healed becomes necrotic.
Finally, the Crofab price you stated is for a box of 2 vials. Needing 12 vials is common, but needing 30-40 or more vials of Crofab is also not all that uncommon. The price of a trip in a medevac helicopter is a lot more than a couple boxes of 2 vials Crofab, but still is less than the price of a complicated critical care admission for the patient with a complex envenomation…. So in the end, Mr. Barry offers the best advice of all: avoid being bitten.
Actually, that was a direct quote from the article (bullet 5 of 7 at the bottom) regarding the suction device, and though I concur that anything beyond loosening any and all clothing/shoes, etc near the bite wound and drinking plenty of water (Not anything but water or sport drinks like powerade/Gatorade, since beer is usually the fluid that gets some bite victims in trouble to begin with.) Comparing the damage resulting from a sawyer suction device to cutting an X into the bite wound, pressure bandages, tourniquets, Ice or electric shock, the suction device is the least invasive. It’s more of an overwhelming psychological need to do something while getting to proper treatment that she was discussing.
I _fully_ agree that doing nothing at all to the bite wound except to get the bite victim to the hospital and anything that could constrict circulation should be removed/loosened is the best course of action. I do education events for the AHA and I tell them that their rattlesnake bite kit is ONLY a cell phone and a set of car keys. I am adding water to that list. I also advise that if bit on the hand, remove watches, rings, and if bit on the foot/leg, loosen shoes, and remove any toe rings, anklets, etc. There will be swelling to the affected limb and any constrictive clothing/jewelry will complicate the treatment & recovery to that area beyond the constraint.
I was only saying that of all the possible invasive Old-wives-tale “treatments” that are out there, the suction bulb that Ann Marie described was the least offensive. I’m sorry if I didn’t make myself clear that I was quoting the article above and providing information from AZ Poison Control, as it was a very recent lecture she provided our Association.
I tell people in the education events that for all I absolutely love reptiles, especially snakes, I flat refuse to ever touch a live rattlesnake, because if I am close enough to touch the rattlesnake, it is close enough to “touch” me with it’s mouth. I have rescued rattlesnakes out of people’s yards, but I make sure to use appropriate tools, with Midwest Best “Gentle Giant” tongs, and a 7 gal bucket with a screw top lid and well placed vent holes so that I can safely transport that snake out to the relocation site nearby and release them. I love photographing these snakes, but don’t get nearly as close as some of our field herper members. There is no photo worth the risk I’ve seen some members take. Any long lens can be turned into a macro lens, and thus afford a bit more distance and increased safety.
As far as I know, in England it’s the Crane Fly rather than the spider that is commonly known as a ‘daddy-long-legs. But there may be regional differences even in our little country!
Wow— I had no idea that storms took such a toll on birds. We’ve got a number of water birds hunkered down out of the storm on lake about 2 miles from the ocean here in Virginia Beach.
I live in Arkansas and we call the “Daddy-long-legs” a “grandaddy spider”. As a child, I would play with it and let it crawl on my arms, legs, head. I had fun playing with the “granddaddy spider” and would never hurt it. I usually put it right back where I got it from.
In my area, we call a dragonfly several different names, such as; snake doctor,mosquito-hawk, and skeeter-eaters. Sometimes one would land on my fishing pole as I was fishing.
I never knew there was an arachnid called daddy-long-legs. My childhood friends used to argue with me that the daddy-long-legs was a spider, and I would say, “No, it has six legs. That makes it an insect.” Then we would count the legs. They didn’t have wings, so could it have been the fly? Does the arachnid daddy-long-legs maybe walk on only six of them, so that we thought the front two were antennae? Now I’m really puzzled. I haven’t seen one recently, although I live way out in the country and have lots of different kinds of insects and spiders to look at.
Interesting! I hope that everyone’s Saturday is going great and I hope that they have a great Labor Day!
Eating carbs IS the best way to put weight on fast, for bears and people. If you have insulin resistance, like bears do (and many people) then when you eat carbs you make larger than normal amounts of insulin. Insulin is THE fat-storing hormone. So insulin resistant bears and people store fat like crazy when they eat carbs. Helps them survive long winters with no food.
As a science teacher I encourage my students to use scientific names for organisms rather than nicknames because they can be confusing. Recently I spent an hour on the internet writing about the different “daddy-long-legs” and gathering pictures. I wish I had seen this article before I spent time on my own research—it’s perfect! I had my students bring in all the insects they thought of as “daddy-long-legs” so we could examine them and learn their actual names—it was fascinating!
So the Aroused male sprays a strong stream of Urine? Sounds like fun.
I live in southern NJ, and have a NWF certified backyard habitat.
I did not see even one Monarch this year 2010 the other kinds of butterflies came as usual.
Hm… i wish i could get my girlfriend to relax HER quills…
What about the caruncles? My favorite turkey word!
They are amazing creatures. I’ve had no luck growing milkweed here in northern California (hot inland area). Thanks for describing their journey!
Growing up on a small farm we had turkeys. One male whom my mother named “Bubbling Jock” was a favorite. He adopted three surviving poults (babies) when their mother was killed by a two legged varmint. He also love to display his an & do a turkey strut whenever we were around. He was such a pet he was never destined for the roaster.
The caruncles is just another name for wattles. During the spring mating season these wattles or caruncles become engorged with blood and are bright red. The center of the males head is a brilliant blue and the top of his head is bright white. These magnificant birds are beatiful during the spring mating ritual.
gobble gobble gobble…...Do not walk in the remote woods during hunting season
The photos of this Sierra Nevada red fox are
quite similar to those of a cross fox,I wonder
if there might be a link to these?
We saw an owl in Virginia when we were their for Tahnks Giving and it reminded me of a time I saw a white one in Arizona in this canyon I was climbing in. Then the other day I saw a hawk in Colorado and it reminded me of long drives along the 87 in New York.
I never thought much about birds but they seem to be making memories for me.
your explanation might be correct, but what if it isn’t. what if it is the ” canary in the mine shaft”? what if there is no human explanation for what is happening to vulnerable wildlife?
Somethings Highly Wrong!!!!!! We’re Not Being Told…. If This has Happened before…... Why Was it not Publicized before????
I agree with the rest of the posters. There is definitely something going on and I believe it is the government that is involved in this. I am not a conspiracy nutcase, I just believe that they are either testing things that they shouldn’t or purposely killing the birds. Why were their beaks blue which from what I’ve been reading, indicates some sort of poison.
I think the main reason this was publicized so much is that it came at the new year. People are so willing to believe the world is ending and while the world as we know it may very well end, I don’t think the Earth is going to be destroyed. People will report anything that gets ratings or sells papers. Many of the mass deaths coincided with rough weather and sometimes certain weather conditions cause fish to die. Any time the news is slow, the media will play up anything unusual. I’ve been worried about the lack of birds at my feeders this year, but as soon as it snowed, they turned up en mass. I don’t think they know for sure what killed the birds. I don’t think its a secret, just lack of knowledge and the unwillingness to admit ignorance.
When I first read the headline on this article, I was really hopeful that someone actually knew why the birds and fish were dying. I am a bit disappointed now, but realistically I do understand that nature can be cruel, by our limited human standards. I don’t buy the firework theory because the birds that died would not normally be in flight at night, so that explanation didn’t make any sense. I really highly doubt the government is doing anything to cause this. Most likely, the birds have some sort of virus or natural disease that is killing them and that is the end of story. Humans travel the globe everyday and can carry the bugs around the world very fast. Maybe we are making the birds sick by carrying a bug that makes them sick..???... talk about irony.
I just don’t buy some of these “theories.” I don’t think it’s the end of the world, yet I think there are some environmental factors at work at least in some of these cases. Fireworks? Come on. Why don’t more birds die over the 4th of July, then?
Although I’m sure that wildlife in general is suffering the same ill effects of immune system deregulation, pollution, environmental degradation and climate change that humans are subject to, there is no “normal” explanation that makes sense at this time. There are no viral, bacterial or toxic chemicals reported in the Red Winged Blackbird necropsies so that kind of rules the disease theory out, unless someone’s lying…
but that could never happen (sic.)
but, I have to say, I love this explanation…......
“they flew into each other” and that caused massive internal hemorrhaging….............
I’d laugh if this wasn’t so sad and such an obvious cover-up, that even this E-publication (that I used to rely on for accurate information) “appears” to be part of.
I find this piece utterly and totally irresponsible. Birds flying into eachother or trees in the dark. Are we presumed stupid? As for the cold bs, it’s happening in areas on the planet where it’s NOT cold, so what, that would be a sun issue? This article is so blatantly pathetic it’s frankly hard to fathom ANY site would dare publish it, let alone one that touts “Nature”.
I agree with many of the other posters that the explanations provided are probably a cover up. I wonder if the fallout from the extreme amount of chemtrails that have be sprayed of late have anything to do with the mass die offs? (No, those are NOT contrails..please google CHEMTRAILS) Or, as many predicted at the time of the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, the corexit 9500(toxic dispersant) and dispersed oil has been picked up and spread by storms and has collected in areas where these birds and fish feed and live. Have the birds and fish been tested externally and internally for any toxins, molds, viruses, or bacteria? Shame on our government for allowing our environment to be polluted ON PURPOSE!!!!
People would not be so angry with them if the government was protecting the citizens and environment of our wonderful country rather than protecting BIG BUISINESS, BIG MONEY and the ELITE!!! Just open your eyes and connect the dots!
Even though I am not a rocket scientist, I, for once, would like to think the public is not being told hogwash on this subject. So now you are saying “yep, it’s from cold weather, or flying into objects. Better yet, let’s say fireworks caused the birds to stress out. PLEASE!!!!
I am quite disgusted that someone in upper mgmt,
in any given coporation, even Nature.com thinks we, the public, are so not intelligent enough, so they will say anything. For the Love of nature, if you don’t know what is causing this unnatural turn of events all over the world, then do everyone a favor and keep quiet. When you are really sure, then let the truth be told. Why does it seem so hard for you to tell the truth?
Hey, maybe it’s those darn aliens poisoning our sky’s. That is about as believable as the fireworks theory. Wake up, people, we are told to think fireworks, etc. You are insulting the very people who keep this world ticking. It’s sickening when the good, hardworking people from our country and around the world are not told the truth. As I said, if you don’t know what’s up, to date, keep your mouth shut. “Oh, what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to deceive”.
Yes, something is obviously up as well as they obviously don’t want us to know what. 9 US states and 13 countries having massive die-offs and THIS is what they want to feed us. You bet something is up whether it’s the Chemtrails, Haarp, Toxins from the Gulf or all three or whatever, other than something is very wrong and it’s nice to see most agree.
You all need to get a grip.
*laughing* at those that say birds don’t fly at night.
First - where do you think birds go at night??
They roost. In trees. Sudden explosions will cause them to startle and in fright yes fly into objects, wires, and each other. They have traumatic wounds consistent with such collisions.
Do you think they just stay where they are? Have you never seen birds fly before dawn and after dusk? (do any of you venture out at these times?? Or do you stay in your homes afraid the boogey man might get you? er I mean government agency…)
I work third shift and it is not unusual to hear birds at all hours of the night. Just because you don’t see them doesn’t mean they aren’t there.
Look at how many birds became trapped in the lights in NYC’s 9/11 tribute. (Or is that another deliberatae ploy against us!)
Mass deaths have always happened. We didn’t hear about them, because, first there wasn’t a widely used internet where most of the population got it’s info, or where people quickly share info with others.
Plus with the internet much more mundane or frivolous news makes it to our attention more often as news agencies seek ways to print ‘fresh’ news and updates.
And you know, once one agency reports it, others quickly pick it up and ‘report’ it too. And we will now hear more because more are going to report, more will be on alert for such mishaps. People seeing 3 dead animals in close proximity will now panic and call in reporting yet anotehr “massive’ kill, perpetuating the problem.
I live across the street from an airport and let me tell you the birds and ducks NEVER get used to it. I see them fly off in a panic on a regular basis when planes and helicopters fly overhead. The ducks are always crashing into tree limbs, wires, etc. I’ve seen ducks get hit by the nearby traffic.
Maybe if some one you got out more often and observed nature for yourself, you would realize how much sense these reports make, rather then jumping on some big bad conspiracy theory bandwagon.
I’m going with the “act of nature” idea because I have seen firsthand massive fish die offs when a sudden freeze comes in on the Texas coast & catches everything off guard. Afterwards, dead fish & shell creatures wash inland by the hundreds. I have seen high waves freeze in the upward position on the back bays of Galveston Island. An unusual sight to behold. With fireworks & an extremely fast moving storm like the ones that went through AR & OK could have caught the birds at a bad time. Another reason to outlaw fireworks. I hate it when people set off their fireworks around nature sanctuaries without any regard for anything but their selfish selfs.
To those thinking all these die offs are “natural”: Please explain why the U.S. Environmental Services workers had to wear hazmat suits and gas masks when they were picking up the 2000 dead birds in Beebe, Arkansas earlier this month?
Unbelievable. Is enature a front organization for the government or some commercial lobbying group? I refuse to drink up the Koolaid you are serving us! Please remove from you email spam list.
What passes as “critical thinking” on the previous posts is just sad. Birds do fly at night, especially when they are startled by fireworks. For those who think “something is up”, please explain how anythinglike what all the illogical theories (like “chemtrails”, HAARP, etc) can target an individual species. Do you really think any chemical or “energy” can kill only red-wing blackbirds without killing everything in the same area? That is more dumb and nonsensical than any of the reasons put forth by experts. Pull your heads out of your conspiracy-theory-ridden butts and look at the facts, not the possibilities and guesswork of the internet myth du`jour. Try research and learning so you can KNOW what happened, not just sit behind your monitor and believe.
For those of you that stated birds do not fly at night, you should be more informed before making such statements. Thrushes, warblers, cuckoos and woodpeckers migrate by night. Wildfowl migrate both day and night. Most songbirds migrate at night.
Yeah, this B.S came right down from the same parties who are covering up the B.P criminal activities. Good bye e nature/MSM
I’m sure this is a typo
...the article stated, “As a frame of reference, there are billions of birds in the United States and experts estimate that bird mortality exceeds 5 billion birds annually. “
Would you post a correction so we can attempt to understand the issue?
Also would appreciate references for more technical reports.
Thanks for all your good work…...
There may be something about the biology of Icteridae (Starlings, Redwing Blackbirds, Jackdaws, etc) which might render them more vulnerable to some variable or disturbance than other species of birds, so do not be too quick to rule out the fact that 1) there is an abnormal pathology occurring here, 2) the news media isn’t reporting accurate information for a variety of reasons, and 3) other unknown factors are indeed either contributing or responsible for the problem.
So far, most of the birds in the mass die-offs were all in the Icteridae family, and investigative fact-finding should be centered around why those birds, all over the world, appear to be suffering *blunt trauma wounds* and dying while other birds *appear* to be less affected by this disturbance.
I do not believe that the world-wide die-offs are “natural” in the sense that humans played no role. We play a larger role than we should with regard to negative impact to other species, so summarily ruling out human fault - even if the article claims otherwise - would not be wise.
It’s a mystery like what is killing the honey bees. If the world would stop using chemicals & pollution maybe these things would not be happening.
The explanation for the die-off are simplistic. What naturalists need to do is actually study the where and the when. Please note that the dies -offs follow a pattern of travel from Canada to South America and the start again in Scandinavia.
The next thing to observe is that the die-off is associated with a specific species , one species at a time. The third item to take note is that the species involved are in large herds or flocks. This does not demonstrate pathogens, or weather patterns, but suggest an intelligent interaction, something akin to the whale and dolphin episodes. Consider someone testing a device.
I was a bit put out about the article claiming that Reindeer and Caribou are the same species, but this article? It smacks of BP fluff. I am off the email list now for sure.
To those who interpreted my earlier posts as saying ‘birds don’t fly at night’ should take a more careful look at what I actually said. If you know anything about the species of birds that are dying (Icteridae which include Starlings, Redwings, Blackbirds, Jackdaws, etc), then you know they don’t ‘normally’ fly at night. See that I clearly said “I don’t buy the firework theory because the birds that died would not normally be in flight at night,” then you know I did not say that birds don’t fly at night.
I live on the west coast of Florida and last January we had massive fish die-offs due to cold weather. The water temperatures inland dropped to levels far lower than the norm and we have so many non-native tropical fish living in our waters here that can not take cold water temps, so the die off was a natural but unintentional product of human activity. (Humans brought these non-native fish here many years ago and they have been thriving in the warm Florida waters and reeking havoc on the native aquatic life.) So, in the end, the fish die-off was beneficial to our ecology even though the huge number of fish dying might have seemed really sad. Nature has a way of balancing itself.
Star Bricker: before you think other people’s ideas are ‘dumb and nonsensical’, explore your own ideas to be sure that they are accurate, correct, and based on truthful facts. The truth is out there and I’m willing to bet that whatever is happening to the fish and birds will have a solid scientific explanation in the end.
People in general tend to what to ‘mystify’ what they don’t understand. Given time, a scientific explanation usually gives light to the things people don’t understand. This mystery is no exception. I am sure we will know soon why the animals die.
On Wikipedia under Icteridae, it states: “Some species of icterid have become agricultural pests, for example Red-winged Blackbirds in the United States are considered the worst vertebrate pest on some crops, such as rice. The cost of controlling blackbirds in California was $30 per acre in 1994. Not all species have been as successful, and a number of species are threatened with extinction. These include insular forms such as the Jamaican Blackbird and the St Lucia Oriole, which are threatened by habitat loss.” The birds dying in around the world are probably due to pest control measures by the farmers to protect their crops. Wait and see. I bet this will turn our to be the answer.
“On Wikipedia under Icteridae, it states: “Some species of icterid have become agricultural pests, for example Red-winged Blackbirds in the United States are considered the worst vertebrate pest on some crops, such as rice. The cost of controlling blackbirds in California was $30 per acre in 1994. Not all species have been as successful, and a number of species are threatened with extinction. These include insular forms such as the Jamaican Blackbird and the St Lucia Oriole, which are threatened by habitat loss.” The birds dying in around the world are probably due to pest control measures by the farmers to protect their crops. Wait and see. I bet this will turn our to be the answer.”
I have a huge ethical and ecological problem labeling of any species as a “pest,” unless, of course, that label refers to Homo sapiens.
Media outlets outside of the US have been reporting that Icteridae which experienced sudden, mass die-offs had injuries consistent with “blunt-force trauma” indicating the birds were struck by a physical object, a sound wave, or the birds themselves struck a physical object. There’s only three viable possibilities here.
The die offs patterns as discussed by Frank Verderber (above post) will be difficult to “explain away” in the affected locales in a relatively short duration of time because of the differing pesticide laws and growing seasons in the hemispheres affected. In other words, farmers aren’t permitted to use poisons in some of those locations, and some of the locations are not growing crops which would attract the birds.
There is likely another variable(s) which has not yet been isolated, and triangulating reports from multiple, international sources appears to be ruling out widespread pesticides.
IER - “I have a huge ethical and ecological problem labeling of any species as a “pest,” unless, of course, that label refers to Homo sapiens.”
I agree 100%! No matter when or if the enigma is ever solved as to what is killing our beautiful birds, I just hope that it stops! I fear that it will not stop until we do find what is causing it and make some changes to protect these defenseless creatures. Unfortunately, people don’t always obey the laws that are designed to protect life. Just because it is against the law for farmers to use poison doesn’t mean that they are not doing so. As I’m sure you know, the internet is global and it would only take one source (ie. farm supply store or pest control type site) who ships world-wide to cause such a devastating impact on wildlife. If poison can get into our food supply, our pets food supply, and agriculture feed, then I figure it could get into other products perhaps used by broad based consumers or farmers.
All of my ideas are just that; ideas. I certainly don’t claim to know anymore than anyone else about these die-offs. I love reading everyone’s ideas and maybe someone who does know something about these animals dying will let the rest of us know soon. I hope so..
There has been speculation that the bird deaths may be attributable to Phosgene gas (and some of the injury descriptions seem consistent with exposure to the gas which would mimic blunt force trauma in soft tissue in some instances).
Read about the gas here:
IER Thanks for the link!
It is not fair how so many people are taking the easy way out by saying thet this phenomenon has a rational explanation. They may be right, but how can you prove this?? I wish people were more open minded. Also, I have worked with wildlife for a number of years, and birds are not stupid. They are survivors. I wish people would give animals a little more credit. If one person jumped off of a cliff, would 2,000 people follow?
Venusian - agree with your point, and am wondering if the “too-neat” explanations are manufactured to ensure Americans don’t become too involved, too alarmed, and too vocal about this issue.
Foreign news media is actually publishing full interviews with American officials that we’re not getting to see, and those full interviews are not flattering and suggest that human activity is the root cause in every single case. Here’s an example:
The birds in question are members of the Icteridae family and though the die-off size isn’t as large as other locations, it was notable enough in size and time period for Romanian scientists to be concerned and look for the cause…which was human pollution, in that case (short article, fast read).
Swedish authorities noted a small die-off of Jackdaws, also Icteridae, and attributed it again to human adverse impact - the use of combustables (fireworks) - and again, from a non-USA news source:
A Japanese media outlet actually published the FULL interview with American wildlife biologists - something the American outlets apparently would not initially do - indicating that again, human activities were at fault:
My points here are these:
1) Journalists may not be able to publish their the information they are finding for various reasons, creating a selective information gap
2) There are multiple, related reasons now for the mass die-offs of birds and fish
3) Human activity is the likely problem, and it seems that there are efforts to “soften” that message because it may positively influence people to change their behaviour to help wildlife, and that may affect some corporation’s bottom line (it wouldn’t be the first time a corporation quashed negative information on their products to head off a drop in demand by consumers)
I obviously don’t know what happened to the different populations of birds around the world, but it seems to me that the “too-neat” explanation of the eNature article, claiming it’s “just another natural thing,” is misleading and inaccurate and humans had better start being open to accepting the responsibility for our collective actions by understanding and addressing just how adversely our actions are affecting other species and the environment to the extent that it apparently is.
U.S. Environmental Services workers had to wear hazmat suits and gas masks when they were picking up the 2000 dead birds in Beebe, Arkansas earlier this month?
To ‘concerned citizen’ the reason U.S. Environmental Services workers had to wear hazmat suits to pick up 2000 dead birds is to protect them from diseases possibly carried by the birds.
an interesting “fact check” - an interesting read.
For those that say..for shame for the government ‘allowing’ the pollution - can I remind you that the government is “US”? It’s not some other unrelated faction that is behind todays current environmental problems. We have all played a part, even by mere apathy, or an unwillingness to do without certain conveniences.
Chronological presentation of the recent fish and bird kills
I was under the impression that Western Scrub Jays pair up for the long haul. They don’t migrate, and there’s only the one pair in the area year round. I can’t imagine they get up to many key parties.
I studied a pair of wild Canada Geese nesting near my house for about 10 years. I could tell which individuals were which by the pattern of the edge of their black neck feathers, and other ways, such as their reaction and trust in me.
The pair nested and raised several broods on a small pond. Finally, one summer, the male was injured…broken wing. He was captured and sent to Cornell Ornithology Lab, where he was rehabilitated and eventually released the following spring. He did not return to his mate, probably because he couldn’t fly very well at first. That spring the female took a new mate, and raised several more families in ensuing years.
I find the use of the word “divorce” to be loaded and not appropriate. Divorce is a legal end to a marriage - their are no legalities when it comes to birds - ” our feathered friends” . I teach students and I for one would not want to use the term divorce and try to draw a line between human divorce and all of its contentious meanings and birds simply seeking a new mate. Unless we see squabbling and divorce proceedings among birds do we as birders want to use an anthropomorphic term for what is really not analagous to human divorce.
Rob…..gawd! let’s nit pick it to death why don’t we…......
“Nitpicking” is OK here, because of the propensity of the Sociobiologists to make wild analogies from all over the animal kingdon and call it Darwinian. It is a pernicious doctrine that leads to eugenics, “The Bell Curve”, Larry Summers-type pronouncements about the relative intellignece of men and women and who knows what other awfulness.
Thank you barbara, As an educator of middle school students - I am very aware of our culture and even scientists put human values and apply human terms to animals that really do not apply. Birds do not DIVORCE - the use of that term is very misleading and anthropomorphisizes bird behavior - which is exactly what the point of the research is. Many bioologists and birders have wrongly applied monogamy to birds that did not have life or even season long partnerships. I wonder why human scientists did that - I would guess we were trying to apply human behavior norms and terms to bird behavior. Therefore I do not think Divorce is a good term to be using. I understant the toungue in cheek grabber of the blog title - about valentines day - but should birders or biologists be applying divorce to Birds - it really confuses and applies human behavior to birds.
Interesting! I hope that everyone had a great weekend, is having another great week and I hope that they have another great weekend! I also hope that they had a great Groundhog Day! I’m sorry that I didn’t say anything about this in my ast post, but it slipped my mind! I also hope that they have a great Abrham Lincoln’s birthday.That goes for last year and all the other times that I’ve missed. The same goes for Valentine’s Day!
Whether or not a species of bird copulates with one or more is not so much the point. The courtship pair sits on the nest and raises the hatched offspring together “faithfully”—that is, just the two brooding and feeding the baby birds—no other bird intervenes in the nest.
Don’t forget the die off of bats. They are dying in large numbers during hibernation from what apears to be a fungus. They are found dead with what looks like cotton substance under their nose.
Barn owls mate for life.It is not uncommon for an owl to will itself to death, much faster than dehydration, over grief of a lost mate….....Bird lovers read Wesley the owl, and his girl. A great book about a girl from Cal Tech who rescues a baby barn owl, and dedicates 17 years to his care…....great and informative!
“The other two nestling have either a different father or mother, or both.” In other words, two mothers may lay eggs in the same nest?
You’re right, Marion. No two female songbirds would be laying eggs in the same nest (unless you count Cowbirds or Cuckoos!). This article has a number of facts wrong. For the truth, read Bridget Stutchbury’s “The Bird Detective”. She and her students at York University (Toronto) did the research that this article is loosely based on. It’s a fascinating book.
you neglected to mention Hawk Mountain in Pa. Easily one of the best places to see large numbers of migrating raptors.
Love in the Air is a heart-warming read. It is so precious reading about how birds, animals in particular, search out companionship in February.
I just read the article and noticed the same thing Marion. There is no way the clutch-mates would have a different mother, passerines may copulate with multiple partners, but they are not community nesters.
Wood Frogs breed from Alaska to Labrador and south to southern British Columbia, northern Illinois, and the southern Appalachians. Their quacking, depending on latitude, can occur between January and July. Keep your ears open.
I think my favorite is the baby peacock. Pretty sure that they’re called “peabiddies”
I like the name for baby opossums—“joeys”
Does anyone know what baby beavers are called?
Baby beavers are called either pups, kits, or kittens.
My favorite is baby porcupines called porcupettes
Baby frogs are pollywogs - much more fun to say than tadpoles!
Lice do not give birth they lay eggs, referred to as nits, which hatch into nymphs, which grow into adults.
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