44

They fly on the wing currents produced by the birds in front of them. It's similar to drafting someone in front of you while cycling or racing. The leader is breaking trail, and the followers are benefiting by exerting less energy. They end up in a V-formation as birds join up one after the other and find a wing to fly on. After a while, the leader gets ...


23

Two possibilities: There's something it thinks is food on the inside. Note that blue tits are quite clever at accessing food, to the extent of opening foil-topped milk-bottles (though the linked article illustrates this with a photo of a great tit!) At this time of year, more likely, it's not trying to get in, but sees its reflection as a rival or (as the ...


20

Yes, there is actually quite a bit of discussion you can find online. Bees in large numbers can keep hummingbirds away. They don't want to get stung either! However, you can lessen the bees by doing a couple things. The first is to maybe dilute your concentration of sugar. If you are doing a 4:1 solution of water to sugar you can do a 5:1 and that may ...


18

For the same reason carrion birds circle over fresh kills: They're waiting for an opportunity to swoop in and get some food. All the gulls see is a large gathering of humans, which typically means dropped chips, bits of hotdog buns, discarded scraps, leftovers on tables, people throwing bits for the birds. Wherever you have big gatherings of large mammals ...


17

Birds do not typically reuse nests, as pests and parasites typically move in and use it as a habitat after the birds are done with it. Those birds who do reuse nests often don't have much success raising healthy chicks, because of said parasites. Also, predators have a much easier time finding food in nests that have been around for a while vs. having to ...


14

The basic idea of turning them off temporarily is to let the birds readjust to their surroundings. For reasons still unknown to science, artificial light attracts birds, from fledgling seabirds to migrating songbirds (it does the same to moths). Once captivated, disoriented birds may crash into windows, or spend hours circling. The 9/11 tribute is ...


13

TLDR: Yes they eat them, No they don't feel the heat. The tiny Bird’s Eye Chili originated in Cambodia, Vietnam, Thailand, The Philippines, and surrounding countries, but they can now be found all over the world. They are presumably called Bird’s Eye Chili because of their small round shape and because they have been spread by birds, which are not ...


12

This usually means that they had a nest in the tree. If they are still there after a few days it probably means they also had young. Either still in the nest or young enough that they still returned to be fed.


12

it's not cold for a goose, as they bring their insulating down-filled sleeping gear with them. ponds/lakes are safer for them than a field where predators are more common. Typically in a flock, not all birds will sleep....some are awake & watching. note that in the event the ice breaks due to warmer weather and/or wind, a goose will float serenely and ...


12

Paul Lydon could be right. The behavior is designed to encourage worms to come to the surface, to make it easier for the geese to find and eat. From the same Wikipedia page he quoted, entitled Worm Charming: Worm charming is a behavior also observed in the animal kingdom, especially among birds. The methods used vary; however, tapping earth with feet to ...


12

If we exclude the birdwatching explanation Shem gives, the only possible ecological reason for a bird feeder is to counteract the negative effect we have on the bird's habitat by having our house there. This doesn't explain why we only tend to feed "cute" animals - if we are to be honest about ecological support, we should analyse impact data on all the ...


12

There are a number of different birds in the sparrow family. In Massachusetts, USA, I think what we technically have most of is the House Sparrow. This page has a whole sparrow list with their sounds. Your profile indicates that you live in California. There are lists here and here of the most common sparrows and small birds in California. Some California ...


11

The best thing to do would have been not disturb them in the first place, but I do understand the need of this question. So I wouldn't add any advice like "Do not disturb them in the first place". From what I have seen, Buzzards and other raptors (not specifically the ones you mentioned) would return to kill if left alone. But, provided that it is done ...


11

I have seen gulls do exactly that. It is known as: Worm charming, worm grunting, and worm fiddling are methods of attracting earthworms from the ground. The activity is usually performed to collect bait for fishing but can also take the form of a competitive sport in areas such as east Texas. As a skill and profession worm charming is now very rare, with ...


11

All it takes is one of the birds to notice and give the alarm and then the other birds join in. Even the chipmunks and squirrels will listen to the birds and then pass the message along. Birds' lives are so filled with danger that they're on alert at all times, just to stay alive. Luckily, they have several tactics to avoid becoming the next meal for a ...


10

Some species reuse abandoned nests. According to the Bird Nests and Eggs field guide, great horned owls reuse abandoned raptor nests, and elf owls nest in abandoned woodpecker holes. This is far from a complete list of species that reuse nests; this is just two I remembered off the top of my head and could find a reference for.


10

The sound you are referring to is probably a plaintive call used to attract attention (of a mate or from the little ones to the parents for feeding) it might just be them wanting to be fed. You can find a better explanation with sound samples here: https://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/Herring_Gull/sounds


10

According to the RSPB, which @muru found spelled out at the bottom of the linked page below as the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds, there is one species of bird that does truly hibernate. According to the RSPB website, the common poorwill, which lives in the western US, hibernates through the winter. This small relative of the nightjar is found ...


9

As bon says in the comments, the most likely explanation is that the vultures and eagle were fighting over a carcass. The answer to your question "do eagles eat carrion?" is an emphatic yes: Unlike some other eagle species, bald eagles rarely take on evasive or dangerous prey on their own... They obtain much of their food as carrion or via a practice ...


9

They eat them. It's true, egg shells are edible, and birds will eat them. Mommy robin probably snacked on the shells while she was sitting on her babies keeping them warm. After laying their eggs, birds are rather depleted of calcium, and eagerly eat the shells up to replenish those minerals. Eggs shells are actually a recommended food for bird feeders. ...


9

The "swans can break your arm" concept is rather lacking in evidence, though one once caused a kayaker to drown. They are a nuisance on the water, especially if you get between adults and their cygnets. Most of what they do, even when they're agitated, is an attempt to drive away a perceived threat, rather than a real act of aggression. On the other hand, ...


9

According to The Cornell Lab of Ornithology, American Robins are indeed found in wild places like woodlands, forests, and mountains. Because worms hibernate, the winter robins feed primarily on berries, found on trees and shrubs in the woods. The Ohio DNR Division of Wildlife lists robins as native to Ohio. Some migrators travel through but there is a ...


9

Common Sparrows, which are the State Bird of Delhi, and also of Bihar, have indeed been on a massive decline in India in recent years. What you're seeing is not a fluke. It's happening in many urban areas in India, and is a serious problem. Although many studies have been done over the years, the largest group in your area which is currently involved in ...


9

There is a route known as the East Atlantic Flyway used for migration between Eastern Canada, Greenland, Iceland, Siberia, Northern Europe, Western Europe, and on to Africa. There are 297 species using the flyway and tens of thousands of individuals per year. They are mainly waterfowl and waders, but an interesting exception is the recently discovered route ...


9

The smallest owl in the world is the elf owl (Micrathene whitneyi). It's about the size of a sparrow, and weighs about an ounce and a half, which is just less than the weight of a golf ball! Wingspan: 13 1/2 - 16 1/2 in. Length: 5 - 5 3/4 in. Tail: 1.8 - 2.1 in. Average Weight: 1 1/2 oz. The back side is rusty-...


9

Those grackles are engaged in a courting behavior, most frequently called “bill tilt.” It's also been called “head up” or “head up threat.” While establishing pairs for mating, males vie for the attention of the females. Usually as the birds arrive, a group of males will chase the females. Gradually the males drop off until there are fewer males vying for ...


9

You might try an umbrella. See this article from The Guardian, Rogue owl caught after year-long reign of terror in Dutch town. A rogue owl that has terrorised a northern Dutch city for the past year, forcing citizens to arm themselves with umbrellas at night, has been caught, officials have announced. Dubbed the “terror owl” by residents of ...


8

Is it okay to take that pretty nest as a sample or a show-piece to put in a personal balcony or a garden? This can be a simple question of size. A large nest, like an eagle's nest, is of course too impractical to take away! but, a really small nest is generally built in a season. Birds are used to that. The smaller the nest, the more really good places ...


8

If the swans are forced to stay next to shore (as opposed to casually being there), they flock together to avoid predation. In addition to flock safety by numbers, Swans are very tough, and very aggressive. Several swans are a lot more dangerous. If you've ever been attacked by a swan, you will know exactly what I mean.


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