Fine Art Exhibition in Frisco
- Kevin Megison and CJ Cowden
- Kevin’s wife is a birder
- complained about the building around her ranch and how the noise scared away her birds
- had a lot of questions
- why weren’t the birds stopping at the feeders regardless?
- is this a sign of things to come? Will the birds come back?
- Kevin’s wife is a birder
Cleaning out the Bird bath
Mystery ID from my trip out to Keller Tx
- spizella sparrow of some sort, either a Chipping or a Clay-colored
Tim highlights: Loggerhead Shrike, American Kestrel, and yellow warblers (48 birds for the two week span)
American Kestrel facts
- Beautiful bird with distinct eye markings, golden breast, and cool gray wings
- originally called a Sparrow hawk
- prefers beetles and mice over birds (I don’t think the birds know that…)
- Austin has plenty of info!
Austin: American Kestrels everywhere, Franklin’s Gulls migrating, Monarch Butterflies
Segment — Is bird camouflage really a thing?
- Sparrows – General hypothesis that female sparrows blend in with their nest and immediate surroundings
- Penguins – black and white
- White – belly helps confuse predators from below (er above if they are in the water)
- Black – confuses predators from above
- Birds see on a different spectrum
- General thought is birds see in ultraviolet
- Can hide from predators
Segment — Birds are vanishing from North America Postmortem
- All birds across the board — including adapters!
- used Christmas counts and breeding bird surveys
- Advantages of talking about news a week or so after the news cycle
- People can digest information, including scientists
- land managers and conservation agencies have actually spent a lot of money to try to drive down or eliminate invasive species
- many other species — especially those that thrive on farmland — population numbers may have actually been inflated in 1970, a result of generations of forest clearance and prairie destruction.
- species that account for most of the 3 billion figure, whether native or not, are mostly among the most abundant bird species on the continent.
- Todd Arnold
- “If you take away the 40 biggest decliners from the dataset, then what’s left behind is hundreds of birds, some of which are declining, some of which are increasing. But, on average, the increases outweigh the declines,”
- What it takes to make the Journal Science
- Along with the desire to publish good science, they are often vying for a coveted slot in a top journal.
What books are we reading?
Tim: Book of Texas Birds by Gary Clark and Kathy Adams Clark
- Gary Clark: Houston Chronicle columnist and avid Texas birder
- Kathy Adams Clark: past president of the North American Nature Photography Association | New York Times & National Geographic
Austin: Sibley Guide to Bird Life and Behavior by David Allen Sibley
- Textbook that is easy to read for non-students/regular people
- Meant to be read along with the Sibley Guide to the Birds of North America
- Great background info on general bird stuff in first part, broken down by family in the second part