Category Archives: Birding the Americas

Caring for our Birds in Winter

Not that long ago it was thought that putting hummingbird feeders out in the winter would encourage birds to hang around past the time they might normally migrate south.  This concern has been proven false for quite some time, but … Continue reading

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The World of the Owl

Since owls and hawks are both raptors (from the Latin ‘rapere’, to seize) and they share morphological and behavioral traits, originally they were thought to be close relatives.  However, with the emergence of DNA analysis, owls are now known to … Continue reading

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Mimids

  What do catbirds, thrashers and mockingbirds have in common?  If you answered they all mimic other birds, you’d be right.  Although a number of birds play at mimicking other birds, mockingbirds, thrashers and catbirds are specialists, to the point … Continue reading

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Canyon Birding by Train

We didn’t intentionally plan this, but scheduling vagaries put us on three train trips to three canyons over three weeks in March.  A triple header spring fling.  Two of the trips were part of Road Scholar’s ‘Scenic Railroads of Arizona’, … Continue reading

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Penguins: White Tie and Tails

Having just returned from the far southern reaches of South America, it seems appropriate to write about the most popular bird from that part of the world, the penguin.  Unafraid of humans (they have no land predators), flightless and shuffling … Continue reading

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When Your Best Friend is a Sapsucker

One of the few bird groups with a name sillier than woodpecker is the sapsucker.  To make matters worse, the poor sapsuckers are actually part of the woodpecker family, Picidae.  In North America, there are 22 species of birds in … Continue reading

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The Twelve Days (and Six Birds) of Christmas

In spite of my obsession with birds, my true love never gave me a partridge in a pear tree, let alone any of the five other birds mentioned in ‘The Twelve Days of Christmas’, a carol published in England 214 … Continue reading

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