Category: Birds

Nest Cam of the Month: Great Horned Owls

Nest cams give you an up-close view of everyday avian drama. Check out February’s featured nest cam ⎯ a great horned owl.

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The American Woodcock: Tribute to a Wonderful Wetland Bird

It has 360-degree vision. It binges on worms. And its spring mating ritual includes some of the funkiest dance moves in the bird world. Meet the American woodcock, a.k.a. timberdoodle.

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How to Green Birding’s ‘Big Year’

In a “Big Year,” birders race to rack up as many bird species as possible, often at a great economic and environmental cost. The Big Green Year changes that.

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Boucher’s Bird of the Year: The Bornean Bristlehead

Birder Tim Boucher’s life list numbers 4929 species, but he still gets excited by new sightings. Join him on a journey to Malaysian Borneo as he encounters his best bird of 2014 — an elusive and little-known forest denizen.

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Winter Bird Feeding: Good or Bad for Birds?

Winter bird feeding is hugely popular, with more than 40 percent of U.S. households participating. But is it actually good for the birds? Ornithologist Joe Smith looks at the science behind this backyard activity.

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The Hooting Season: Enjoying Great Horned Owls

The breeding and nesting season for most birds is months away. But not so for great horned owls. Here’s what you need to enjoy the hooting extravaganza at a park near you.

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The Great Turkey Shuffle: How Restoration Has Changed Gobbler Genetics

When reintroducing wild turkeys across the United States, conservationists paid little attention to turkey subspecies. Today, determining turkey subspecies can require the skills of a wildlife CSI team. What does this mean for turkey genetics — and future conservation?

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A Tale of Two Turkeys

It’s that time of year: join us for a taste, so to speak, of turkey natural history, conservation and science — including a look at a turkey that will definitely not be on your plate in two weeks (and doesn’t even gobble).

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The Penguins of Boulders Beach

Forty years ago, Boulder Beach in South Africa had no penguins. Today, tourists flock there to see thousands of these charismatic birds. A conservation success? Not quite. The real story is a bit more complicated.

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Decoy: How Fake Birds Aid Real Research

To get a bird in the hand, you have to catch it first. One of the bird researcher’s most trusted bird catching tools is the decoy — a fake bird. Ornithologist Joe Smith on why real birds so often fall for their wooden and paper mache likenesses.

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Boucher’s Birding: Standardwing Bird of Paradise

For birders, seeing Wallace’s Standardwing is like winning a lottery jackpot. Now you can see it, too — Tim Boucher brings you up close in this video.

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Enjoy the Fall Migration: Your Guide to Bird Observatories

The fall bird migration is underway. And there’s no better way to enjoy the spectacle — and help science — than to visit a bird observatory near you. Ornithologist Joe Smith gets you started.

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Follow That Curlew: Radio Tracking a Mysterious Migration

It’s easy to see long-billed curlews on their grassland nesting grounds. But little is known about them once they leave. A radio-tracking research program aims to shed light on the entire life cycle of this declining shorebird.

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Wind Turbines and Birds: What’s the Real Story?

Cats and window collisions kill more birds, but that doesn’t mean conservationists should ignore the effects of wind turbines. Blogger David Mehlman takes a look at the science, and finds significant impacts to both birds and bats.

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Grouse Robot: Remote-Controlled Bird Assists Conservation

A grouse robot? You bet. And no, it’s not a gimmick. On the sagebrush plains of Wyoming, researchers are deploying the fake birds to study how males react to females — and helping to protect the species in the process.

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Diverse Conservation

Call for Inclusive Conservation
Join Heather Tallis in a call to increase the diversity of voices and values in the conservation debate.

What is Cool Green Science?

noun 1. Blog where Nature Conservancy scientists, science writers and external experts discuss and debate how conservation can meet the challenges of a 9 billion + planet.

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Cool Green Science is edited by Matt Miller, the Conservancy's deputy director for science communications, and managed by Lisa Feldkamp, an American Council of Learned Societies fellow with the TNC science communications team. Email us your feedback.

Innovative Science

Infrared Sage Grouse Count
The challenge: find a chicken-sized bird in a million-acre expanse of rugged canyons & bad roads. Infrared video to the rescue.

Wildlife Videos In Infrared
Infrared enables us to see minor variations in temperature. See how this technology is revolutionizing conservation science.

Nature As Normal
TNC Lead Scientist Heather Tallis is researching how to make people see nature as critical to life through three lenses: education, water and poverty.

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