Questions tagged [birds]

Egg laying, two legged, warm blooded, vertebrates with feathers. Use this tag to ask questions about our feathered friends.

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10 votes
2 answers
917 views

Does feeding migratory birds in the fall affect the timing of migration?

On the east coast of the United States where I live, various species of birds migrate South (sometimes West) for the winter. Some stop briefly on their long trek, others have been here for months. ...
Sue Saddest Farewell TGO GL's user avatar
7 votes
2 answers
592 views

Does the male or female Emperor penguin incubate their egg, and for how long?

I've been told that the only place Emperor penguins live is Antarctica. They live in colonies which can be anywhere from 500-20,000 birds. Unlike some other birds, including other penguin species, ...
Sue Saddest Farewell TGO GL's user avatar
21 votes
1 answer
2k views

Do bees at the hummingbird feeders keep the birds away?

Although not greater in number, our hummingbirds this summer seem to be larger than in the past. I think it may be because my husband started making our own nectar, so it's fresher, and might taste ...
Sue Saddest Farewell TGO GL's user avatar
12 votes
1 answer
643 views

Is dirty birdbath water worse than none at all?

For the last few months, we've experienced long spells of drought and heat in Massachusetts, on the East Coast of the United States. At least thirty birds and three generations of squirrels and ...
Sue Saddest Farewell TGO GL's user avatar
8 votes
1 answer
306 views

Where have all the sandpipers gone?

(long time passing). I walk along Del Monte beach in Crow City, USA (Monterey, California) quite often. For quite awhile, sandpipers were there in abundance - more than any other bird. I haven't ...
B. Clay Shannon-B. Crow Raven's user avatar
5 votes
2 answers
4k views

What are these large black and white waterfowl with red around the eyes?

There's a pond located at a restaurant near where we live in Massachusetts. It's always very busy because the restaurant gives out food for the ducks, geese and swans. We've been there often and ...
Sue Saddest Farewell TGO GL's user avatar
9 votes
1 answer
3k views

Swift, Swallow or House Martin?

What are the identifying features that allow you to tell the difference between these 3 common UK summer visitors? I've been looking at the RSBP advice but it seems that a swift and a house martin ...
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10 votes
1 answer
6k views

What happens to the eggs after American robins are born?

When American robin chicks fledge, meaning leave the nest, it is pretty much empty. It's also fairly clean, as the parents have been removing the waste from the babies after each feeding. Aside from ...
Sue Saddest Farewell TGO GL's user avatar
6 votes
1 answer
206 views

Is it safe to feed swans in the United Kingdom?

I've heard that a swan can break your arms with a flap of its wings, etc., but am not sure if that's true. There's a nature reserve - local to me - where the swans come up on foot out of the water and ...
seventyeightist's user avatar
10 votes
1 answer
131 views

Are the birds that snatch bread out of the air "more citified" (tamer) than those who let it drop?

I often take a slice of bread to the beach when I go on my beachcombing ramblings, and throw pieces of it to the shore birds that are, like me, combing the beach but, unlike my search for "jewels" are ...
B. Clay Shannon-B. Crow Raven's user avatar
4 votes
1 answer
239 views

Is the reappearance of large crow populations 15 years after the West Nile dieback a widespread occurence?

We used to have lots of crows in our area -- Northern Virginia, outside DC. Then West Nile virus struck roughly 15 years ago, and crows disappeared from our area. According to the Centers for ...
ab2's user avatar
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10 votes
2 answers
7k views

Bald eagle vs. vultures?

I witnessed a bizarre scene on the James River in Richmond, VA, USA (1000 yards west of Mayo Bridge if you want to examine Google Maps). It was on a large rock in the middle of the river, where nearly ...
priorww1's user avatar
  • 291
11 votes
3 answers
5k views

Did I see an Osprey?

My friends think that I'm mad, but I'm pretty sure I saw an Osprey the other day. Could anyone confirm that what I observed is an Osprey (Pandion haliaetus) or, at least, Osprey-ish? I saw the bird ...
user avatar
9 votes
3 answers
2k views

What can I provide to help a robin build her nest?

We went away for five days and came home to find a robin building a nest in the crook of the downspout of our gutter. I live in Massachusetts, in Northeast United States, so she's probably an American ...
Sue Saddest Farewell TGO GL's user avatar
3 votes
2 answers
745 views

What sort of crane, and what sort of snake?

In an area near where I work in Monterey, I often walk during the noon hour and end up in a meadow that is much-beloved to red-winged blackbirds. The other day I saw something unusual, though - as I ...
B. Clay Shannon-B. Crow Raven's user avatar
8 votes
4 answers
510 views

Are crows more interested in identifying individual humans than vice versa, and if so, why?

I live in Crow City, USA (AKA Monterey, California). I can't tell one crow from another without their perching right next to me on a bust of Portola. They seem to all be clones of each other, as far ...
B. Clay Shannon-B. Crow Raven's user avatar
6 votes
1 answer
391 views

Are the seagulls begging or contentedly sighing?

For any Dr. Doolittles out there, when a seagull makes a "cooing" sound, is it more like the "miaow" of a cat, or the purring of a cat? Specifically, when the seagulls "talk" to each other, it is ...
B. Clay Shannon-B. Crow Raven's user avatar
12 votes
2 answers
6k views

Does the color of hummingbird nectar make a difference?

I've seen different types of hummingbird nectar, some red and some clear. My question is, will the red be able to attract more hummingbirds, vice-versa, or will they both attract the same amount? Note:...
Tom's user avatar
  • 497
8 votes
2 answers
251 views

How should I position my hummingbird feeders to attract the most birds?

I'm trying to increase the hummingbird population in my yard in Northeastern United States. I grow certain types of flowers specifically designed to keep them happy, and have often found them drinking ...
Sue Saddest Farewell TGO GL's user avatar
8 votes
1 answer
113 views

How do Plover sentinels give the "move out" signal?

During my usual weekend morning jaunt along Del Monte Beach in Monterey (California), I noticed for the first time the Plovers, who normally seem to forage nonstop, actually taking a communal break. ...
B. Clay Shannon-B. Crow Raven's user avatar
7 votes
1 answer
168 views

Swans jammed together in a small pond

Due to heavy rain, the water level raised drastically in the last days and arose a few small "ponds" besides our local river. Also the main stream is accordingly extremely wild these days. Recently ...
OddDeer's user avatar
  • 23.5k
8 votes
4 answers
569 views

What would cause sudsy surf?

I took my usual weekend stroll along the strand (Del Monte Beach in Monterey, California) today. It was different today than ever before. For one thing, there were no Sandpipers or Plovers or Gulls ...
B. Clay Shannon-B. Crow Raven's user avatar
10 votes
1 answer
215 views

Why do Sandpipers show off their catch?

I noticed a couple of Sandpipers today who, after extracting a larger-than-normal morsel from the sand under the receding waves, "strutted their stuff" and dropped the morsel they had discovered for ...
B. Clay Shannon-B. Crow Raven's user avatar
4 votes
1 answer
2k views

Why do Sandpipers sometimes hop on one leg?

While walking on the beach in Monterey, I have noticed several Sandpipers that I at first thought had lost a leg; they hop along on the one, eliciting pity from naive onlookers. Then, though, they ...
B. Clay Shannon-B. Crow Raven's user avatar
5 votes
1 answer
151 views

What species of bird is in this recording from Bethesda MD?

Recorded in September 2015 in Bethesda, MD. https://www.dropbox.com/s/8sb5jjx3maeuk4o/Birdcall_Sept_Bethesda.m4a?dl=0 The recording was created at 1:00 PM on Sept 24th. I didn't see the bird, but I ...
Adam Thomas's user avatar
2 votes
0 answers
48 views

What species of bird is in this recording? [duplicate]

Anyone recognize the bird call in the first 20 secs of this recording: https://www.dropbox.com/s/8sb5jjx3maeuk4o/Birdcall_Sept_Bethesda.m4a?dl=0 Recorded in Bethesda, Maryland in September of 2015....
David's user avatar
  • 121
7 votes
3 answers
716 views

Why do Sandpipers and Plovers "hang out" together?

I walk on Del Monte beach in Monterey, California quite often. I see LOTS of Sandpipers there; and always with them are Plovers (which remind me of little frenetic Killdeer). The Sandpipers dig into ...
B. Clay Shannon-B. Crow Raven's user avatar
10 votes
1 answer
244 views

Lots of birds together at the same time

This year in October I saw a lot of robins, male and female, finches and chickadees, and geese flying south. Surprisingly I didn't see many juveniles from previous broods. My guess is that juveniles ...
Caters's user avatar
  • 681
8 votes
2 answers
491 views

Have attacks on humans by raptors other than owls been documented, excluding cases where they were defending their nests?

The Washington Post recently reported that a juvenile owl was attacking early morning joggers on a trail near Bethesda, MD. Signs have been put up on a section of the trail reminding users that the ...
ab2's user avatar
  • 23.6k
6 votes
1 answer
130 views

Is "dynamically soaring" suitable as a bird identification feature?

I've never heard of a bird besides the Albatross which is able to use "Dynamic Soaring". Am I able to draw any conclusions out of this behavior? Like, can I say "it's definitely an Albatross" or "it's ...
OddDeer's user avatar
  • 23.5k
6 votes
4 answers
303 views

Where to report bird with leg ring id?

Years ago, after a storm, I found a dead bird with an id ring on its leg. I wanted to find out where to report it, but before I returned with a camera to take a photo, a neighbor decided to dispose ...
Roflo's user avatar
  • 2,456
12 votes
1 answer
12k views

What is the best way to give an injured bird water?

There is this pigeon that I found the other day, it couldn't fly, had a chewing-gum attached to its wing, and probably a hurt neck, it would just sit and weep. I fed the bird with water using a ...
WedaPashi's user avatar
  • 31.7k
16 votes
8 answers
92k views

What should I feed ravens/crows?

There are some big raven's I've noticed visit our housing estate in the early am. They're big majestic birds and I quite like them. What food would you put out to encourage these into your garden? ...
user avatar
14 votes
4 answers
17k views

How to help birds with water?

In India, the monsoon lasts for 4 months between June and September. Since last week or so the rain is gone, and this monsoon hasn't been decent, the rainfall had been it's lowest since the 1970's and ...
WedaPashi's user avatar
  • 31.7k
15 votes
4 answers
6k views

Does a bird really abandon the nest? Will similar birds re-use it?

This may appear a bit opinion-based. Birds take a while and a lot of effort to build a nest. Is it okay to take that pretty nest as a sample or a show-piece to put in a personal balcony or a garden? ...
WedaPashi's user avatar
  • 31.7k
9 votes
1 answer
320 views

What type of bird seed attracts the most amount of birds?

When looking for bird seed (particularly this time of year, Autumn) what kind of bird seed should I be using to attract the most amount of birds into the garden? Is the seed even important or will any ...
user avatar
8 votes
1 answer
308 views

Why do I often see male robins with female robins?

Observing and understanding the behavior of wild animals is an integral part of enjoying the outdoors. Hence the following question about the behavior of robins. Even when it is not breeding season ...
Caters's user avatar
  • 681
9 votes
4 answers
635 views

Why do I never see robins in the woods?

I know that there might be robins in the woods that I just never see. But why don't I see any robins. I see lots of birds including chickadees, cardinals, and blue jays. There are Hawthorn trees out ...
Caters's user avatar
  • 681
6 votes
1 answer
202 views

Do Herons travel alone in New England?

We live in Massachusetts, and love trees, flowers, and wildlife of all kinds. Sometimes when wandering around marshy areas, especially in New Hampshire and Vermont, we're blessed with a sighting of a ...
Sue Saddest Farewell TGO GL's user avatar
18 votes
2 answers
29k views

Why do seagulls circle around at high altitudes?

I was recently at a music festival in a field here in the UK. It was a nice hot day and I was staring up into the lovely blue sky. I noticed there were high numbers of seagulls circling above, ...
user avatar
11 votes
1 answer
700 views

Why are two birds obsessed with a chopped-down tree?

Where I work, there was a great pine tree which was recently chopped (actually, sawed) down. Prior to its demise, this tall pine was visited often by lizards and birds. After its removal, though, ...
B. Clay Shannon-B. Crow Raven's user avatar
13 votes
4 answers
1k views

How to encourage birds into the garden of a rented house?

I live in a relatively rural area of North Wales in a new build house. I've been trying to encourage birds into our garden with limited success. There are plenty of birds in the area just not many in ...
user avatar
8 votes
1 answer
162 views

Identify this bird call?

Could somebody please identify the birdcall in this recording? The bird is calling at 00:01, 00:10, 00:29, 00:36, 00:52, 01:06, and 01:18. This recording was made in England, in mid-June. Also, how ...
Jez's user avatar
  • 191
22 votes
4 answers
8k views

Why do robins tilt their head to the side before pulling a worm out of the ground?

I've seen this happen several times. The robin hops along, stops, tilts it's head slightly and then grabs the worm/grub, etc. What's the purpose of this gesture? I'm thinking it maybe helps them ...
user avatar
7 votes
1 answer
614 views

Law on hunting wild pigeon? (UK)

Pigeon meat is good! 1 squab (whole pigeon) has 37g of protein which is the majority of most people's daily needs. On top of that wild pigeon has practically no carbon footprint, which is impressive ...
Jekowl's user avatar
  • 173
4 votes
1 answer
4k views

Can hunting dogs be trained to hunt multiple animals?

Basically, I am wanting my dog to retrieve birds, but also hunt rabbits and foxes. I may also want to use him to smell for blood trails from deer, elk, etc. Would this be possible, or would it just ...
dudebro's user avatar
  • 41
8 votes
1 answer
2k views

Help identifying black and white "square winged" bird?

I keep seeing a particular bird lately and I don't recognise it. Can anyone help? I've only ever seen it from the car and in flight so I have no photo's unfortunately. It's black and white about the ...
user avatar
21 votes
6 answers
148k views

How to humanely kill an injured bird?

Last night I was walking my dog when I came across an injured racing pigeon. I've reported it to the owner who's coming to pick it up today, providing it's survived the night..... I was thinking ...
user avatar
12 votes
2 answers
599 views

Field dressing small game in hot climates

When hunting small game in a hot climate, is it advisable to field dress the game where it falls, or wait until the carcass can be refrigerated? Searching has turned up plenty of conflicting answers, ...
Kevin Krumwiede's user avatar
8 votes
2 answers
572 views

How can I tell if a wild bird is legally protected?

If I was out on a long hike, and I wanted to shoot a bird for supper, is there a way to find out in a very short time whether or not that species is legally protected? Sometimes you can get in trouble ...
J. Musser's user avatar
  • 1,932