Typically I simply wish to hug eBird, or extra particularly, whoever writes the brief species descriptions (despite the fact that I’m not the everyday hugging type of particular person, belief me on this). Akin to within the case of the Rufous-backed Dwarf-Kingfisher, which eBird describes as a “tiny, unbelievably cute kingfisher: a luminous ball of pink, orange, yellow, and ranging quantities of blue and purple”.
Admittedly, when pondering of hugging this particular person, I hope it’s a cute younger feminine scholar moderately than an outdated beer-bellied male ornithologist …
Collared Kingfishers apparently do pretty properly in palm oil plantations – no marvel as they clearly don’t thoughts fairly weird-looking issues.
If you happen to ever get invited to lunch by Collared Kingfishers, it’s possible you’ll subsequently wish to fastidiously take into account whether or not to simply accept. The identical applies when being invited by some Cantonese individuals.
The Plain Sunbird is the plain vanilla model of the in any other case usually very colourful household (okay, a really low-budget type of joke).
Including insult to damage, eBird disparagingly characterizes it as “extraordinarily plain”.
However it’s true – the species has to face the fact that it’s a lot, a lot plainer than another relations such because the Ruby-cheeked Sunbird.
One paper means that the Ruby-cheeked Sunbird primarily feeds on bugs moderately than on nectar, the extra frequent meals of sunbirds. Nonetheless, the HBW lists nectar amongst its meals.
The burden indicated for each sexes within the HBW (“male 8·2–9·1 g, feminine 8·6 g”) means that the feminine birds management their weight way more strictly, whereas the males often – possibly after watching a soccer match whereas ingesting beer and consuming fatty issues – achieve weight which they lose once more each time the dearth of fresh kitchen gear retains them from getting ready meals.
There are about 50 totally different species of flowerpeckers globally. Considerably puzzlingly, Wikipedia states that they’re usually boring in colour, although the location then admits that in a number of species the males have brightly patterned plumage. That characterization works pretty properly for the Yellow-rumped Flowerpecker …
… for which the HBW certainly states that “feminine is duller than male” …
… however much less so for the not-very-dull-in colour Yellow-breasted Flowerpecker (for which each sexes look related).
If in case you have ever been to Singapore, you’ll know that about half the locations there are named after Sir Thomas Stamford Bingley Raffles (1781 – 1826). For good measure, some animals within the close to neighborhood have been additionally named after him, equivalent to Raffles’s Malkoha.
You recognize there’s most likely some evil backstory if Wikipedia talks of a “advanced” legacy of Raffles – additional detailing that “he was in the end an imperialist benefiting on the expense of the indigenous peoples”. So, I assume that is one other chicken title that needs to be modified finally.
There isn’t any British explorer named Sir John Noticed (1789 – 1856), so the title of the Noticed Fantail will probably stay unchanged.
One of many scarier moments of the keep at Tabin was when two Asian Shiny Starlings tried to hypnotize me with their piercing pink eyes. I escaped, barely.
In distinction, the Little Spiderhunter is frightening for spiders solely, not for individuals.
To me, the Whiskered Treeswift appears a bit like it’s sporting some type of generic superhero costume. I assume it’s these facial stripes. If these are taken off, the species appears identical to Clark Kent.
eBird characterizes it as “long-tailed and long-winged, like a cross between a swift and a swallow” – maybe impressed by the Genus title Semiprocne (“half-swallow”).
The Crested Serpent-eagle isn’t a vulture, however that doesn’t preserve me from mentioning a current Economist article right here, “The sudden demise of Indian vultures killed hundreds of individuals”. And whereas this text is behind a paywall, the original research paper isn’t. It describes how, when a veterinary drug utilized in India killed the overwhelming majority of Indian vultures, the human loss of life price in affected places elevated by about 4% because the vultures have been now not round to feed on animal carcasses and the sanitation thus worsened considerably.
In fact, there needs to be a photograph of a vulture right here, not of a Crested Serpent-eagle.
Whereas this was matter to spotlight within the Economist, a current chief on nationalism in the identical journal was much less helpful. In that chief, it’s acknowledged that “Nationalism may be optimistic or damaging” – one thing I doubt very a lot. They quote Yascha Mounk: “At its finest, it [nationalism] can encourage a white Christian dwelling in rural Tennessee to really feel particular concern for a Hispanic atheist dwelling in Los Angeles—and vice versa.” It is extremely onerous for me to see how a rural Tennessean having a particular concern for the Hispanic atheist dwelling in Los Angeles however not for one dwelling in Buenos Aires or Tokyo is usually a pressure of fine. Isn’t that what nationalism is all about? I care about you as a result of you may have the identical passport? Us towards them?
Okay, Kai, no one is basically very excited by your ideas on political points – may you get again to the subject of birds?
Effectively, sure. Woodpeckers are birds which can be usually well-liked and thought of pretty apolitical (with a number of exceptions, such because the Pileated Woodpecker that took half within the storming of the capitol on Jan 06, 2021, although the chicken concerned claims this was a misunderstanding).
Apparently, any individual as soon as made fairly an effort to explain the totally different plumages of the Orange-backed Woodpecker: the natal down, the juvenile (first primary) plumage, the formative plumage, the second primary plumage, the third primary plumage, and the definitive primary plumage.
So, should you ever consider dressing up as an Orange-backed Woodpecker of various ages, bear in mind: you have to to spend some huge cash on costumes.
Whereas the costume celebration an Orange-backed Woodpecker goes by means of when rising up seems like enjoyable, the Latin species title of the Buff-rumped Woodpecker (tristis, “unhappy, gloomy”) doesn’t.
In a review of Gorman’s e book on woodpeckers, the reviewer (Koenig) suggests a woodpecker huge 12 months, as he causes that the prospect to come across a wave of Buff-rumped Woodpeckers in his (presumably North American) yard could be very slim …
Not solely people endure from Harry Potter books. Apparently, because the launch of the Harry Potter collection in Indonesia within the early 2000s the recognition of owls such because the Buffy Fish Owl as pets has elevated, resulting in extra birds being caught within the wild after which bought at native chicken markets.
Even the title of the owls has modified: “Whereas up to now owls have been collectively often called Burung Hantu (‘Ghost birds’), within the chicken markets they’re now generally known as Burung Harry Potter (‘Harry Potter birds’)”. (source)
Poor Buffy Fish Owl. It deserves so much higher than being caught and locked in a cage.
The Brown Boobook appears virtually an identical to the Northern Boobook passing by means of Shanghai on migration. Each are a part of what one paper calls the Brown Hawk Owl advanced – one thing that’s a lot much less objectionable than the military-industrial advanced however (at the very least to me) not likely much more attention-grabbing.
The Brown Boobook is sedentary, although. No probability of seeing it in Shanghai, you must come additional south to see it (as I did on this journey).
eBird appears barely spooked by the species, mentioning its “massive, unsettling yellow eyes”. Perhaps the obscure reminiscence of a nightmare? Hopefully, the well being plans of Cornell College embrace entry to some psychiatrists …
Like owls, the Higher Inexperienced Leafbird (if that is certainly one) additionally suffers from being captured and bought as a cage chicken – it’s now listed as Endangered.
Its species title sonnerati is derived from Pierre Sonnerat (1748-1814), a French naturalist. His considerably doubtful declare to fame features a e book describing his journey to New Guinea even though he by no means really received to the mainland space of New Guinea (source).
The HBW even has data on the worth growth of this species: “It’s now probably the most quite a few species in Indonesian chicken markets. Market costs have tracked demand: in 1987 birds retailed for $ 14, rising to $ 44 in 2014 and $ 99 in 2016.”
My historical past of taking photographs of the Black-naped Monarch isn’t a contented one – whereas I’ve seen it a number of instances, even in Shanghai, I by no means received the type of picture I actually wished – that of a male with view of the black cranium cap (or zuchetto – I regarded this up) in any other case worn by bishops.
This was one other considered one of these events – some first rate pictures of a feminine however not of the specified male. Sexism in chicken pictures is alive and in impolite well being, I’m afraid.
Happily for the discerning male birder who doesn’t wish to come over as misogynistic, female and male Blue-throated Bee-eaters look alike. So there isn’t a must particularly search for males.
Curiously, the Latin species title viridis (“inexperienced”) is way more acceptable for the juvenile chicken than for the one partly inexperienced grownup.
Life as a juvenile Blue-throated Bee-eater is the standard hell that nature gives for a lot of creatures: “Blue-throated bee-eaters observe asynchronous brooding, which signifies that chicks hatch at totally different instances, usually pairing with siblicide. Older chicks usually are not solely bigger and capable of face up to bigger wounds from different siblings, but additionally have the power to monopolize the meals they’re fed by dad and mom.” (source)
Another paper is much more easy: “Sibling competitors in blue-throated bee-eaters invariably led to nest fatalities, which have been induced by sibling assaults with an apparently distinctive, however developmentally non permanent, hook on the tip of the higher mandible.”
Full with gory particulars recorded in scientific element: “Variety of peck wounds and scars on blue-throated bee-eater chicks in relation to the sum of mass variations between every chick and its bigger siblings (referred to as the ‘mass drawback’) …” Or clarify this to the youthful considered one of a pair of siblings: “Mortality usually begins with smaller and youthful people because of the lack of meals and assaults from their bigger siblings” … (source).
Nonetheless, regardless of these identified murderous tendencies of Blue-throated Bee-eater chicks [note: Grammarly helpfully suggests replacing Bee-eater with Beef-eater: but no, this is a birding blog, not a cooking show], none of them has ever been accused of homicide in a US court docket, a lot much less convicted. That makes it even much less justifiable that some individuals must endure prolonged court docket battles simply because they tried to overthrow election outcomes. The one rationalization I’ve for this unequal remedy is that it have to be a witch hunt.
If that each one sounds a bit too thrilling to you, why not take a look at photographs of the Brown Fulvetta? Even the often pretty optimistic eBird reviewer admits that “because the title suggests, that is a reasonably uninteresting-looking fulvetta with out flashy distinguishing traits”.
The Brown Fulvetta is listed as “Close to Threatened”, which is a bit puzzling on condition that the HBW names a lot of places the place it supposedly is moderately frequent. My private concept is that listers who see this chicken have already forgotten all about it by the point they get round to placing their eBird lists collectively.
Within the “different” part of this publish protecting these unlucky animals that aren’t birds, we now have a tarsier.
And another animals.