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  1. After a particularly long week of computer based work on my Ph.D., all I wanted was to hike somewhere exciting with a rich wildlife. A friend commiserated with me—I was based at Newcastle University at the time, and this particular friend wasn't keen on the UK's wilderness, its moorlands and bare uplands, compared to the large tracts of woodland and tropical forests that can be found more readily abroad. View the full article
  2. The yellow-billed cuckoo has soft brown wings, a white belly, a long tail with black and white spots, and is running out of places to live. The cuckoo's population in its native breeding range in the eastern United States has declined in recent decades due to urbanization, heat waves and other factors. Climate change will likely further reduce its suitable habitat. View the full article
  3. A University of Wyoming researcher led a study of great gray owls in a four-state region, showing that range discontinuity could lead to genetic drift and subsequent loss of genetic diversity in these birds. View the full article
  4. From March to December every year, Humboldt penguins nest in vast colonies on the Peruvian and Chilean coasts. The lucky ones find prime habitat for their nests in deep deposits of chalky guano where they can dig out sheltered burrows. The rest must look for rocky outcrops or other protected spaces that are more exposed to predators and environmental extremes. View the full article
  5. Quailthrush are a group of songbirds unique to our region. They are widespread throughout Australia and New Guinea and there are eight recognized species. View the full article
  6. It is often thought that humans are different from other animals in some fundamental way that makes us unique, or even more advanced than other species. These claims of human superiority are sometimes used to justify the ways we treat other animals, in the home, the lab or the factory farm. View the full article
  7. Love, sex and mate choice are topics that never go out of fashion among humans or, surprisingly, among some Australian birds. For these species, choosing the right partner is a driver of evolution and affects the survival and success of a bird and its offspring. View the full article
  8. As winter approaches, marine turtle nesting in the far north of Australia will peak. When these baby turtles hatch at night, they crawl from the sand to the sea, using the relative brightness of the horizon and the natural slope of the beach as their guide. View the full article
  9. Humans are unusual, even among primates, in the length of our "extended childhood." Scientists think that this period of childhood and adolescence, which gives us lots of time to explore, create, and learn, is a key reason why we are smart enough to learn skills that take years to master. But humans are not the only species with an extended childhood. Elephants, some bats, whales, dolphins, and some birds—especially corvids—also have them. But does an extended childhood confer higher intelligence for other species, and if so, what is the role of parenting? View the full article
  10. After a severe drought gripped the Prairie Pothole Region of the U.S. and Canada in the 1980s, populations of almost all dabbling duck species that breed there have recovered. But not northern pintails. Now, a new study by a team of researchers suggests why—they have been caught in an ecological trap. View the full article
  11. ,Waders like wet conditions. They look for insects and other creepy-crawlies in the damp earth. Some species, such as the Mexican snowy plover or the ruff have developed fascinating behavioural patterns. Clemens Küpper and his working group at the Max Planck Institute for Ornithology in Seewiesen is conducting long-terms studies of the social behaviour of these birds. Here, the issue of biodiversity is central, since like many groups of bird species, the numbers of wading birds are in dramatic decline. View the full article
  12. People in Britain feed up to 196 million birds a year with 60,000 tonnes of bird food, at a total cost of £300 million. All those garden feeders have helped boost populations of dozens of bird species, including the garden regular, the blue tit, whose numbers have increased by 26% in the last 50 years. View the full article
  13. A ZSL study published in Nature Communications today maps the evolutionary history of the world's terrestrial vertebrates—amphibians, birds, mammals and reptiles—for the first time, exploring how areas with large concentrations of evolutionarily distinct and threatened species are being impacted by our ever-increasing 'human footprint'. View the full article
  14. Diving as a lifestyle has evolved many times in the animal kingdom, and the ecology of all diving animals is essentially shaped by how long they can hold their breaths. View the full article
  15. Spring is in full swing. Trees are leafing out, flowers are blooming, bees are buzzing, and birds are singing. But a recent study published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences found that those birds in your backyard may be changing right along with the climate. View the full article
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