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Blog Birding #75

For those who like fooling, this first of April was a winner.  Not only was Ted Floyd's post a big hit, but there were a few other clever Fool's Day entries that are much easier to read in the cool, honest, light of the next morning.

Julie Zickefoose illustrated a new species of warbler whose habitat requirements are surprising:

The dun mountain warbler (Pseudoseiurus monochromis) was recently discovered by bear hunters on all-terrain vehicles trying to reach forested habitat on the far side of a 10,000-acre mountaintop removal site in southern West Virginia. The species was described by ornithologists from the NBO, who were alerted to its existence when the West Virginia bear hunters (who were being filmed for a reality television show) remarked on camera that "it was the only thing we seen that was alive for miles around."

The eBird folks encourage checklist submissions from all parts of the solar system:

With some significant shame, eBird staff would like to apologize publicly for the patently North American focus of recent BirdCasts. Ever since eBird expanded beyond North and South America in June 2010 we have been collecting bird observations from a much broader area, and with this new information we should have been able to make predictions for a variety of new regions. Today, we offer a special BirdCast for those regions that have thus far been neglected. Enjoy, and exercise caution if you search for migrating Eurypyga helias, Heliornis folic, and Heliangelus mavors this week!

The Fair Isle blog broke the amazing news that local Razorbills would be raising a cloned Great Auk chick:

The Razorbills will hopefully lay an egg to be hatched & reared in the wild, much like the nest parasite Cuckoo who leaves a egg for a smaller bird to feed. I personally can't wait to see the "new" Great Auk, but I also know Razorbills are having a hard time fledging their own young. I'm told that the nest will be monitored and helped if needed. Fair Isle was picked for it's location, no egg sucking rodents & infrastructure, plus, limited "Auk gawk" as she referred. I myself hope to be a "Auk Gawker" soon but the nesting site is at the bottom of cliffs at Easter Loder and that is sure to cut down the foot traffic. Intrigued I had a look online at some of the history and science of the cloning of the Great Auk and have provided some links if you are interested?

David Sibley announced a video guide to bird songs:

Today I’m very pleased to announce my latest major project. It’s a bird song identification guide in a format – animated video – that has been entirely, and inexplicably, overlooked by bird guide authors. I’ve been working very hard on this for a while now, so I’m really excited to be able to show it.

And Seagull Steve of Bourbon, Bastards, and Birds had a Thick-billed Kingbird in San Diego:

I have seen 6 species of kingbirds here in my home state, which pretty much gives me major bragging rights (to various nerds that most people would not want to brag to in the first place).

Oddly, I have seen more Thick-billed Kingbirds in California than Eastern Kingbirds, which is kind of weird…but I'm ok with that ratio. I love me an Eastern Kingbird, by this monstrosity of a flycatcher exists on a completely different level.

Ok, that last one's not really fooling, just some nice photos, but enjoy the rest in full knowledge that none of them are true.

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Nate Swick

Nate Swick

Editor, Social Media Manager at American Birding Association
Nate Swick is the editor of the American Birding Association Blog, social media manager for the ABA, and the host of the American Birding Podcast. He lives in Greensboro, North Carolina, with his wife, Danielle, and two young children. He is the author of Birding for the Curious and The ABA Field Guide to Birds of the Carolinas.
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