How Many Birds Are on Fall Migration?

How Many Birds Are on Fall Migration? Do you ever wonder how many birds are on the move during fall Tree Swallows Migrating Photo Credit: Deborah Rivel migration?  We did and found Cornell Lab of Ornithology answered this question in their first report on numbers of birds migrating over the US from data gleaned from radar […]

The Year of the Bird in September – Solutions to Birds and Glass

Photo Credit: Sarah Sharpe/FLAP Fatal Light Awareness Project We all know the sound of the thud on our window. Then the sinking feeling as we rush to see if the bird is down and needs help or is dead.  FLAP (Fatal Light Awareness Project) has some good advice about what to do to help the bird […]

Nestcams!

Songbirds are mostly finished nesting, Guillemot Chick Screenshot: explore.org and their chicks are gaining strength to make their first migration south.  But there are still some adorable nestlings and juvenile birds waiting to make their first flight. Don’t miss these seabirds and Osprey before they leave the nest! Puffin burrow with a fluffy puffling and a Guillemot chick in […]

In the News: Pesticide That Makes Birds Lose Their Way on Migration

  Indigo Bunting Photo Credit: Deborah Rivel Its important to be gardening with organic fertilizers and pesticides, and to keep chemicals out of your bird-friendly backyard. If you find this difficult to do, be aware that some pesticides contain neonicotinoids – a type of neuro active synthetic insecticide chemically similar to nicotine – which affects much […]

The Year of the Bird in July – Take A Kid Into Nature

Photo Credit:Meghan Kearney, USFWS This month in the Year of the Bird, we encourage you to get your kids or kids you know out into nature.  If you love birds, teaching a child how to bird can create both an understanding of and interest in nature which can translate into a lifelong passion for him […]

Why Do Birds Stand on One Leg?

Why Do Birds Stand on One Leg? Shorebirds Sleeping on One Leg Photo Credit: Deborah Rivel Have you ever seen birds standing on one leg – maybe even hopping on just one? Are they injured? Whether they are sleeping or standing in water, birds sometimes just prefer to remain upright on one leg.  Ever wonder why […]

A Safe Backyard For Nesting Birds

A Safe Backyard for Nesting Birds     Northern Cardinal Fledgeling Photo Credit: Deborah Rivel Nesting season is upon us, and we are thinking about our backyard and gardens from the birds perspective.  Here are few things the birds you are attracting right now will appreciate your doing for them!   1 – With baby […]

The Year of the Bird in June – Take Action and Use Less Plastic

The Year of the Bird in June – Take Action and Use Less Plastic!   Dead Albatross chick with stomach full of plastic Photo Credit: Chris Jordan Time was when discussions surrounding plastic and birds often revolved around taking bags (often plastic) to the beach and gathering up the myriad detritus of birthday balloons, plastic […]

Migration Explained

Migration Explained Twice each year, more than 5000 species of birds migrate.  Peregrine Falcon Photo Credit: Deborah Rivel   This represents about half the world’s species of birds (not including subspecies).  Migration is something billions of birds undertake worldwide, and their journey takes them through and over all types of habitats, altitudes and terrains including some inhospitable […]

Year of the Bird — In April, Birds Need Your Help

The Year of the Bird in April – Birds Need Your Help 2018 is the Year of the Bird, and in April, birds really need your help!  The Year of the Bird celebrates the 100th anniversary of signing into law the Migratory Bird Treaty Act which has protected billions of birds on migration – from Peregrine Falcons to Magnolia Warblers, […]

Complete Your Winter Backyard With a Roost Box

Complete Your Winter Backyard With a Roost Box    Chickadee checking out a roost box Nest boxes and roost boxes are important components of a well-maintained bird-friendly backyard. In winter, birds really need shelter from cold, winds and predators. Leaving nest boxes up may help, but during really cold times, birds can best maintain their body […]

Project Snowstorm – Snowy Owls in Motion

Project Snowstorm – Snowy Owls in Motion   Snowy Owl Photo Credit: Stan Tekeila Snowy Owls are true denizens of the far north, and are only occasionally found south of the Canadian border — even in winter. These beautiful pure white owls are widely admired for their beauty, but not well understood. Project Snowstorm is changing […]

Cowbird Mysteries

Cowbird Mysteries   Brown-headed cowbirds are brood parasites – a term which is pretty much as terrible as it sounds. Basically, these cowbirds mate, and then never build a nest. The females quietly figure out which birds are building nests and then deposit eggs in the nests of these unsuspecting birds. Some birds can figure it […]

Why Do Birds Flock in Fall?

Why Do Birds Flock in Fall?  At the end of the summer, you may start to see large flocks of birds.  Swallows, blackbirds, cowbirds, sparrows amass — sometimes in large flocks that seem to come out of nowhere and then just as mysteriously, disappear.  But why is this?  And why don’t we see it at […]

Making That First Migration

Making That First Migration  Young birds are leaving the nest, and many of them are getting ready for their first trip south. Migration is a hard and risky business for any bird, but the first marathon voyage for many species of birds takes place shortly after they have fledged. How do they do it? Songbirds […]

Fallout

Fallout! Migration is a tough time for birds. Some studies have shown that it is the hardest part of the yearly life cycle for migrants, causing the most mortality. Neotropical migrating birds winter in Central and South America, then migrate to North America for the breeding season. Migration continues throughout the spring season, but if you […]

Summer Migration

Hey wait a minute!  Doesn’t migration take place in spring and fall?  Well, yes…and no.  Migration actually takes place year round as there are birds on the move to and from their breeding grounds at all times of year.  Just like all birds don’t nest at the same time, not all birds migrate at the […]

Bird Superhighways

Think only humans use highways? Not so! Animals also have paths on land, in the ocean and in the air that they follow year after year. Not unlike our daily commutes, during migration birds use known routes. In  North America, for example, there are 4 main migratory superhighways generally followed by birds: Atlantic, Mississippi, Central […]

HOW DO OWLS HUNT

Owls are visual hunters who take advantage of the different perceptions at night to confuse their prey. While some owls eat insects and birds, the most popular item on the menu is rodents. And to trick the rodents, owls rely on a time tested recipe for success.   The first ingredient in the owl’s hunting […]