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All about birds: News, Stories, Facts & Science

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Snowy Owls Make Southern Debut

(OWLS/BIRDS) Snowy owls are native to Arctic regions, and thus are never really spotted past the southern border of Canada. This year, however, the white owls have been spotted much farther south. Residents in Massachusetts, Minnesota, New York, North Dakota, and Kansas have already reported sightings. The snowy creatures' migration rarely includes the United States, so seeing an owl this season truly is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. To discover why the white owls are flying so far out of their usual path, and for tips about where to find them, read the full article below. — Global Animal
Alaskan North American Endangered Bird Bald Eagle

See A Bird’s Eye View Of Flying Like An Eagle

(BIRDS/SKIES) GoPro has quickly become the world's most versatile camera, allowing for an infinite amount of creativity in the photography and video production worlds. In terms of the animal kingdom, GoPro has enabled personal encounters with creatures through video capability. These unique and captivating videos allow us to see things we could previously only dream of experiencing. A few months ago, a trainer in the French Alps decided to strap his own GoPro to the back of a bald eagle. His video has become immensely popular because of what it depicts—a literal bird's eye view as we follow the bird's flight through the skies. Read on for some fun facts about the North American bald eagle and see the GoPro video for yourself! — Global Animal

Condors Rejoice! California Bans Lead Ammunition

(WILDLIFE/ENDANGERED SPECIES) California is leading the way for wildlife recovery by becoming the first state to require that all hunting ammunition be lead-free. On October 11th, Gov. Jerry Brown signed the ban in response to documented studies and repeated requests by environmental groups to protect the highly endangered California condors, as well as other birds and wildlife, who are killed every year from direct and secondary lead poisoning. Lead ammunition is devastating to animal life, especially for scavengers like the condor, who are at huge risk by consuming hunted carcasses. Environmentalists are hoping that the ban in California could encourage other states to pass similar laws. In a 2012 study conducted by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, researchers found that almost 70 percent of condor deaths were the result of lead poisoning. With only 400 birds left in existence, eliminating lead-based ammunition is a huge step in the right direction for potentially stabilizing, or even dramatically increasing California condor populations. Read on for more information on the bill, lead poisoning, as well as arguments brought forth by hunters and other opponents. — Global Animal

Migrating Monarchs Mourn Loss Of Habitat

(SKIES/WILDLIFE) A recent study on the Monarch butterflies' winter habitat in central Mexico claims logging may be seriously threatening the winged creatures' migration pattern. At its peak in 2005, logging destroyed as many as 1,140 acres per year throughout the region. A report in March said the number of butterflies arriving to Mexico this past year dropped 59 percent—the third straight year of declines for the butterflies and the lowest their populations has dropped in two decades. Read on to learn more about what can be done to prevent more of the butterflies' habitat loss. — Global Animal
Alaskan North American Endangered Bird Bald Eagle

Is The Wind Industry Killing Our Wildlife?

(WILDLIFE/SKIES) A newly published study by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service claims that wind energy facilities are responsible for the deaths of at least 85 golden and bald eagles between 1997 and 2012. Because eagles tend to fly with their focus on the ground as they hunt for prey rather than staring ahead, their risk of death or injury significantly increases. However, wild energy proponents are fighting back, stating that only a few bald eagles have died in collisions in the history of the industry. However, researchers believe the study "likely underestimates, perhaps substantially" the exact number of eagle deaths due to wind turbines. Read on for more information on the ongoing debate between the wind industry and those questioning the safety of our high-flying wildlife. — Global Animal

The Real Cost Of Putin’s Environmental Showboating

(WILDLIFE/POLITICS) With the G20 summit meeting taking place in St. Petersburg today, and a debate on Syria on the table, Russian President Vladimir Putin has had a lot of schmoozing to do this past week. He's not particularly known for having the warmest personality, and it comes as no surprise that he is no friend to animals either—though his PR campaign attempts to say otherwise. In fact, the truth is his treatment of animals is far from what's actually portrayed in the pre-arranged photo-ops. Read on to learn more about Putin's staged compassion for wildlife. — Global Animal 

“Spy” Stork Arrested In Egypt

(WEIRD ANIMAL NEWS) EGYPT — Egyptian authorities detained an alleged “spy” bird after a fisherman captured and brought the suspicious-looking bird to the police station. The crime? The avian secret agent was wearing some sort of electrical device. And while Egyptian police referred to it as a swan, the animal is most likely a stork. It also turns out the electronic gadget isn't a bomb or spying device, but a tracking tool used by French Scientists studying the bird’s migration patterns. Since Egypt's first democratically elected leader was overthrown back in July, the country has lived under a cloud of suspicion against anything foreign—but a bird? And this is not the first animal suspect either! Read on to learn about other non-human 007s and why Egypt's "most wanted" is still behind bars. — Global Animal

Get the Lead Out! California Condors Caught in Crossfire

(WILDLIFE/ANIMAL CONSERVATION) The battle in Sacramento to pass Assembly Bill  711, which would ban the use of lead ammunition in California, is catching the state's condors in the crossfire. The Humane Society, Audubon California and Defenders of Wildlife are pushing to make California the first state to ban lead bullets. The organizations support the adoption of Assembly Bill 711 because lead ammunition is devastating to animal life, especially scavengers like the condor. Read on...

Scientists Save Bats, And Us

(SCIENCE) A mysterious fungus has been crawling west from New York for a strong seven years now. The fungus attaches itself to it's carrier and makes it's way from cave to cave, eventually killing the animal through starvation. While the cause of the fungus has gone undetectable, scientists have recently identified an important missing link to this disease which leads experts closer to saving a small but vital part of the eco-system, the bat. Continue reading the article below for more scientific details on solving the mystery. — Global Animal

New Study Spells Bad News For Bees

(ANIMAL WELFARE) The world’s honeybee population has been taking a drastic hit for a while now, but a new study may have found the source of what is commonly thought of as colony collapse disorder. Scientific journal, PLOS ONE, believes a mixture of pesticides and fungicides are contributing heavily the bee populations’ decline. Continue reading below to find out how researchers came to this conclusion, and what steps beekeepers will be taking in the future to avoid putting the honeybees in harm’s way. — Global Animal

Cornell Borrows Bird Watchers For Sighting Study

(ANIMAL RESEARCH) Researchers at Cornell University are going out of their way to be fair to our feathered friends. The school’s programs allow everyday birdwatchers to take part in their studies by supplying Cornell with information on bird sightings. The data collected can help identify migratory patterns, and other behaviors. Continue reading below to find out what can be accomplished with Cornell’s compiled data. — Global Animal

Clever Bird Houses In Brick Shelter City Sparrows

(SKIES) Designer Aaron Dunkerton’s new project may have stylish birds flocking to the cities. The project, Bird Brick, is intended to provide shelter in urban areas for the critically endangered house sparrow of the United Kingdom. The dwelling’s entrance is a circular brick that fits between an array of traditional bricks. Continue reading to learn about the structure’s interior, and how it hopes to help the house sparrow. — Global Animal

America’s Rarest Bird: Bubble Pop-ulation May Burst

(ANIMAL SCIENCE) The Gunnison sage-grouse, also known as the "bubble-pop" bird, is a very unique animal with an even more unique mating ritual. When courting females, the males parade around while wagging their spiky tails and making a popping-like sound as they inflate yellow air sacs that protrude from their white chests. These "bubble-pop" birds were discovered 13 years ago but are teetering on the brink of extinction. Only 5,000 remain in the wild, possibly making the Gunnison sage-grouse the rarest bird in America. Continue reading for more on the "bubble-pop" bird and its dwindling population. — Global Animal

Rare Bird Sighting Sparks Flocking Frenzy

(BIRDS) For the first time ever, the Rufous-necked wood-rail bird was spotted in the United States at the Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge in New Mexico. This rare discovery has ignited a birding frenzy as the species is typically found along the coasts and tropical forests of Central and South America. Ever since, hundreds of bird enthusiasts are flocking to the refuge in order to catch a glimpse of the rare bird. Read on to learn more about this significant sighting. — Global Animal

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