Study provides insights into birds’ migration routes

A songbird

A songbird

By tracking hybrids between songbird species, investigators have found that migration routes are under genetic control and could be preventing interbreeding. The research, which is published in Ecology Letters, was conducted using geolocators that, like GPS, record the position of a bird and allow its long distance movement to be tracked. Continue reading

Birds migrating through Toronto face tough flight

The Canada warbler is on the endangered species list. (QMI Agency file photo)

The Canada warbler is on the endangered species list. (QMI Agency file photo)

The Fatal Light Awareness Program geared up for this spring’s bird migration through Toronto with the hopes that fewer of their feathered friends will die flying into skyscrapers.

The charity, with a league of volunteers, has been working for more than two decades to highlight and reduce the plight of the 1 million rare birds that die in the city’s downtown every spring and fall. Continue reading

Radio tag reveals epic phalarope journey

Female Red-necked Phalarope are more brightly coloured and do little of the care of their offspring. Photo: Steve Young (www.birdsonfilm.com)

Female Red-necked Phalarope are more brightly coloured and do little of the care of their offspring. Photo: Steve Young (www.birdsonfilm.com)

A tiny geolocator has uncovered a hitherto unsuspected extra-long migration by a Scottish Red-necked Phalarope.

An RSPB tracking device weighing less than a paperclip has helped scientists uncover one of the world’s great bird migrations. It revealed that one particular Scottish Red-necked Phalarope migrated thousands of miles west across the Atlantic to the Pacific Ocean, a longer journey than that recorded for any other European breeding bird. Continue reading

‘Unique’ bird migration discovered

The tag was recovered from a male red-necked phalarope in Shetland

The tag was recovered from a male red-necked phalarope in Shetland

A tracking device which weighs less than a paperclip has helped scientists uncover what they say is one of the world’s great bird migrations.

It was attached to a red-necked phalarope from Scotland that migrated thousands of miles west across the Atlantic to the Pacific Ocean. Continue reading

Flights of fancy: Bird migration in Israel’s Hula Valley

Migration season brings millions of soaring and squawking birds to Israel to the delight of camera-clicking spectators.

To enter the expanse known as the Hula Valley, with its vast plains encased by the steep, sloping mountains of Israel’s Upper Galilee, is to experience nature’s own theater-in-the-round. It is a breathtaking sensory production, a symphony of sight and sound, as the migration season’s show-stealer – Eurasian cranes numbering in the tens of thousands – soar and squawk to the delight of camera-clicking Israeli spectators, tourists, and bird watchers. Continue reading

Tiny transmitters track migration of American oystercatcher

A stroll down the beach is part of courtship for these oystercatchers

A stroll down the beach is part of courtship for these oystercatchers. (Photo by Walker Golder, Audubon North Carolina)

When the migrating urge hit the American oystercatcher named CFX in mid-August, he took off from his Outer Banks home to join the party gathering on Capers Island, off Charleston.

There, up to 1,000 of his fellows, striking black-and-white shorebirds with long orange beaks and orange-ringed eyes, fly in from Texas to Maine to spend the winters. Continue reading