Bird

Brood X Cicadas Could Cause a Bird Baby Boom

This spring’s emergence of periodical cicadas in the eastern U.S. will make more than a buzz. Their bodies—which will number in the billions—will also create an unparalleled food fest for legions of small would-be predators, including many birds and mammals. But some animals may benefit more than others, and any boost predator populations get from the coming buffet of winged insects will likely be short-lived, researchers say.

Tiny chickadees and mice have been known to wrestle these chunky bugs for a quick snack. Raptors, fish, spiders, snakes and turtles will gulp them down when given the chance. Captive zoo animals

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Nine Great Spots For Bird-Watching in Philly and the ’Burbs

Guides

This is prime migration season for our feathered friends. Here, the best local places for watching them wing it.


A barn swallow lands on a Philadelphia railing. Photo by Getty Images

Sure, you can just glance out your back window and see birds; that’s part of their charm. But why not up your odds of glimpsing an egret or a swan, or even a snowy owl, when so many great birding spots are nearby? Just be warned: Sometimes, watching birds

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The best places to see birds around Austin and what to look for

Right before 9 a.m. on March 6, five or six purple martins swooped acrobatically in the wind above the Austin Water Center for Environmental Research at Hornsby Bend.

It was a good sign. The first migratory birds of spring had begun to arrive in Central Texas.

To prepare for this annual feathery visit, which peaks in late April, I hit some of the area’s top birding spots on multiple mornings not long after the winter storms.

Given the travel deficits imposed by the pandemic, this 12-day tour — actually 15, but one was spent hopelessly lost and another two were

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Boston’s Pigeons Coo, ‘Wicked’; New York’s Birds Coo, ‘Fuhgeddaboudit’

Boston and New York are famed for their rivalries: everything from the Yankees versus the Red Sox to who makes the correct clam chowder. Even the local wildlife has hometown pride—because pigeons that roost near Rockefeller Center are genetically distinct from those that summer at the Cape. The finding is in the journal Evolutionary Applications. [Elizabeth Carlen and Jason Munshi‐South, Widespread genetic connectivity of feral pigeons across the Northeastern megacity]

“I don’t think we could be in a city without thinking about pigeons. And for many people, it’s one of the few daily interactions they have with wildlife.”

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Visit the secret life of birds with 2021 Bird Photographer of the Year finalists

© Raymond Hennessy/BPOTY 2021

Bird Photographer of the Year is one of those contests that give us an insight into the fascinating and versatile world of animals. In this contest’s case, it’s obviously the birds. I personally love all feathery creatures, so I’m happy to share with you today the finalists of the 2021 WPOTY contest.

The World Photographer of the Year is open for photos in the following categories:

Main categories

  • Bird Photographer of the Year
  • Best Portrait
  • Birds in the Environment
  • Attention to Detail
  • Bird Behavior
  • Birds in Flight
  • Black and White
  • Urban Birds
  • Creative Imagery

There are

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Bird Protectors Built a Giant Sandcastle to Ensure These Martins Have a Nesting Home For Years to Come

Conservationists realized they needed more than a bucket and shovel to build a 400-ton sand castle large enough to be an attractive home for sand martins to roost in England.

Sand martins, copyright David Tipling for Surrey Wildlife Trust

To help the tiny birds they needed big machines—and building a sandbank large enough for them to build their nests in required the help of a sand-sculpting firm.

The sand martin The smallest English members of both the martin and the swallow family—the birds were finding fewer and fewer places perfect for boring their nests, as so much development had replaced

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