Building lights are a deadly lure for the billions of birds that migrate at night, disrupting their natural navigation cues and leading to deadly collisions. But even if you can’t turn out all the lights in a building, darkening even some windows at night during bird migration periods could be a major lifesaver for birds. [Read more…] about Study: Darkened Windows Save Migrating Birds
Cornell Lab of Ornithology
The Cornell Lab of Ornithology is set to participate in Black Birders Week (May 30th–June 5th) with a free webinar about neighborhood birding, a preview and Q&A on the PBS film The Falconer, and a family-friendly trivia night. [Read more…] about Free Webinars Celebrating Black Birders Week (May 30–June 5)
Each spring, billions of birds fly northward, making April and May among the very best months to be a birdwatcher in North America. [Read more…] about Spring Bird Migration Free Webinar Thursday
Cornell Lab of Ornithology scientists have been tracking the effects House Finch eye disease for more than 25 years. The disease causes red, swollen, watery, or crusty eyes. Afflicted birds can recover, but may die because they cannot see well enough to find food or avoid predators.
The latest analyses, based on the observations of Project FeederWatch participants from eight Northeast states, addresses the long-term impact of the disease on House Finch populations and points to the role of the finch immune system in the bird vs. bacteria battle. [Read more…] about New Study Considers Birds and Bacteria Arms Race
New research reveals that a recently discovered songbird has traveled a very rare evolutionary path — a finding that challenges the typical model of how new species form. Exploration into the origins of the Iberá Seedeater of southern South America shows that a new lineage need not always arise from genetic mutations accumulated in geographic isolation over millions of years. Instead, the novel mixing and matching of existing genetic traits already found in closely related species can create something new, at a much faster pace. [Read more…] about Study Finds Genetic Shuffling Speeds Up Evolution of New Species
House Sparrows were introduced in Brooklyn in 1851. They expanded rapidly to become one of the most common species in the U.S. and Canada.
The European House Sparrow has a story to tell about survival in the modern world. In parts of its native range in Europe, House Sparrow numbers are down by nearly 60%. Their fate in the U.S. and Canada is less well known. [Read more…] about Even The Common House Sparrow Is In Decline Study Finds
Love them or hate them, there’s no doubt the European Starling is a wildly successful bird. A new study from the Cornell Lab of Ornithology in the journal Molecular Ecology examines this non-native species from the inside out.
The study looks at what exactly happened at the genetic level as the starling population exploded from just 80 birds released in New York City’s Central Park in 1890, peaking at an estimated 200 million breeding adults spread all cross North America. [Read more…] about Starling Success Traced to Rapid Adaptation
The 24th annual Great Backyard Bird Count (GBBC) is set to take place February 12th through 15th.
During the Great Backyard Bird Count people from around the world count the birds they see for at least 15 minutes on one or more days of the count, and then enter their checklists online. [Read more…] about Great Backyard Bird Count Starts Friday
The Cornell Land Trust Bird Conservation Initiative (LTBCI) has announced they are offering around $300,000 in grants for land trusts in 2021. [Read more…] about Land Trust Grants To Protect Bird Habitats Offered
In 1844 New York State published a volume on birds in Natural History of New York. Written by James E. DeKay with hand-colored lithographs by John William Hill, it was the State’s first attempt at a comprehensive scientific cataloging of New York’s birds. At the time about 301 species of birds were known to be present in the state.
Sixty years later another effort was made to bring together the State’s bird knowledge. The first of the two-volume of Birds of New York – Water Birds and Game Birds – was published to much acclaim. The book was a collaboration between wildlife artist Louis Agassiz Fuertes and author Elon Howard Eaton. Birds of New York listed an additional 100 species – several of which were then “well known,” but unknown in the 1840s. The book would serve as a model for those that followed.