Learning About Condors & Vultures

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Andean Condor (above)

I watch a lot of old Westerns and you can always count on the scene where the vultures are circling above the guy that was left in the desert to die just before being rescued (sometimes).

 
I’d like to point out some of the benefits vulture ownership can offer (should you wish to commit a felony). If you have a home on a sizable  property -1 acre, 5 acres, 10 acres – a vulture flock will keep it free of any and all debris/vermin/rodents/dead cats. Vultures are nature’s janitors.

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At Last, The Secret To How Do Birds Stay Alive During Winter Is Revealed

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Quora is a cool place for content. Unfortunately there are a lot of amateurs answering questions with some, well, wrong answers. This particular question ran off the rails quite early. You can view the first 2 original answers here.

With 10,400 (plus or minus) species of birds the question is rather vague. Parrots a.k.a. hookbills, parakeets and conures all reside in temperate climates. One exception we know quite well here in Chicago is the Monk parakeet or Quaker parrot.

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Scientists fundraise for conures

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Did you know the sun conure may be facing extinction in the wild, and you can help? There is a real need for more surveys to establish their status in nature. The 2014 estimates published on the IUCN database are between 1,000 and 1,499 mature birds. Some of the last known sun conures live in Guyana, a country with a small human population and a lot of forest and savannah grasslands.

The IUCN page mentions that the trade in wild conures is “ongoing” because “due to the ease with which birds can be attracted to bait (e.g. corn) and the large distances they will travel, it is easy to trap all the individuals in an area.” Quoted from Jamie Gilardi.

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How are feral parrots surviving feral cat genocide?

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I’ll let this sink in – I call it “sanity”

A follow up to: Debunking the myth of feral cats devastating US songbird populations

 

3,700,000,000 birds (feral cats *by themselves* through simple math are killing an estimated 1.4-3.7 billion birds per year… )

(If you accept statistics with a plus or minus 110% statistical accuracy)

 

1 year = 8,760 hours = 422,374 birds being eaten by feral cats every hour 24/7

8,447 birds being eaten by a feral cat in each of the 50 states every hour 24/7

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Debunking the myth of feral cats devastating US songbird populations

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We try to stay true to our philosophy and vision about the care of exotic birds but because we love birds we’re always trying to learn a little more. Most of you reading this have birds.

Some of you are thinking of getting a bird and others have had birds. Were all here for the same reason. We love birds. Humans will always disappoint, birds never will.

I’ve seen this argument come up repeatedly in the past year or so. Feral cats are devastating the song bird population. Folks, I don’t buy it. But because I’m the guy without the degree of the white lab coat I’ve got to go out and earn your trust the old-fashioned way.

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What bird flies across two continents in two days – nonstop?

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From my exposure to falconry I learned Peregrine Falcons can attain speeds of 300 miles an hour or more while in a dive pursuing prey. But what about getting from point a to b? How fast & long can a bird really fly before needing to land?

me training Tommy a 3 year old (at the time) peregrine falcon

 

As it turns out a European species called the “Great Snipe” holds the nonstop speed record for all birds traveling major distances. One country they begin their journey from is Poland (if you’re planning a bird watching trip there).

We’re not sure if the Arctic tern racks up mileage rewards for the 50,000 miles (80,000 km) it covers every year as they go from basically the North Pole to the South Pole and back again. But they take their time and spend a lot of time fishing along the way (probably sampling the local beer).

Snipes on the other hand have been found to fly from Sweden to sub-Saharan Africa (think Egypt) nonstop as in zero rest in two days (tracked by scientists armed with scientific Snipe tracking apparatus) . That my friends is 4200 miles (6760 km) meaning these feathered flying machines are cruising at a mile a minute (97 km an hour) for 48 hours without stopping at a “Flying J” (bird/trucker joke).

They don’t look like they’re very aerodynamic birds but that’s because they get so plump in the fall storing valuable and necessary fat for these whirlwind flights. It’s been noted that they literally double their body weight prior to the migration. Urban legend has it that when shot by a hunter their bodies explode hitting the ground because their skin is so tight.

What’s even more amazing is the path they take offers ample rest stops which Snipes choose to ignore, one more anomaly in nature that baffles scientists.

the snipe is not an impressive looking bird
Chalk it up to birds get more amazing every day.

 

written by mitch rezman
approved by catherine tobsing

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