American Birding Podcast
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Blog Birding #409

Duck genetics are a real mess, as any park pond will quickly make clear, and even birds we consider to be “good” species are closer than we imagine, as Jente Ottenburghs at Avian Hybrids explains.

Philip Lavrestsky and his colleagues sequenced the DNA of five members from the Mallard complex that occur in North America: [read more…]

Blog Birding #408

What’s the deal with feeding jelly to birds? Is it harmful? Laura Erickson has the answers.

In 2004, when I had exceptionally high numbers of orioles, Cape May Warblers, and catbirds coming to my grape jelly, people were finding dead orioles and warblers in the woods—there simply wasn’t enough natural food to support the large [read more…]

Blog Birding #407

At Shorebird Science, Metta McGarvey and Stephan Brown share what they hope to accomplish this season in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.

Our surveys in the Arctic Refuge are part of a project we helped initiate in 2000 called PRISM (the Program for Regional and International Shorebird Monitoring). The goal of PRISM is to systematically [read more…]

Blog Birding #406

eBird makes novice birders into community scientists, as Mukta Patil explores at Sierra.

With this information, the team at Cornell is able to gather information about things like bird distribution, population, and habitat use. “We’re interested in understanding what’s happening with a biological system,” Wood says. “And in order to do that, we [read more…]

Blog Birding #405

At Avian Hybrids, Jente Ottenburghs discusses the famous Haida Gwaii population of Northern Saw-whet Owl and whether it should really be considered a unique species.

More than one year ago (in January 2018 to be precise), I wrote a blog post about the evolutionary history of the Northern Saw-whet Owl (Aegolius acadicus). A genetic study [read more…]

Blog Birding #404

At Avian Hybrids, Jente Ottenburghs documents how populations of Red-necked Phalaropes who breed quite close to each other winter on opposites sides of the world.

An international team of scientists equipped several Red-necked Phalaropes from different populations with geolocators. The results showed two distinct migrations routes. Birds breeding in Scotland, Iceland and Greenland migrated to [read more…]

Blog Birding #403

Are you watching the last season of Game of Thrones? Nick Lund at Audubon writes about the birds of westeros and interviews the sound engineer who is responsible for making this fantasy world sound somewhat realistic.

Much of that consideration comes from the show’s supervising sound editor, Tim Kimmel, who has worked on [read more…]

Blog Birding #402

At Hakai Magazine, Phoebe Weston looks into how scientists actually count the many millions of bird crossig the Gulf of Mexico this time of year.

Over the next 18 days, from April 19 until May 7, more than one billion birds will attempt the perilous journey north over the Gulf of Mexico to reach their [read more…]

Blog Birding #401

Warblers that migrate less tend to sing pair duets more, the reasons for this are explored by Liam Mitchell at The AOS Pubs Blog.

We tested whether migrating and duetting are correlated in the evolutionary history of New World warblers. Essentially, we were looking to see if duetting and the absence of migration show [read more…]

Blog Birding #401

The week has been one for Bill Thompson III memories, and Sharon Stiteler of Birdchick adds hers.

I have so many special birding moments or stories that I tell friends that he was part of. He may not even be mentioned in those stories, but he was there experiencing them with me. He was [read more…]