Birding News #77

:: Alberta has announced that the Western Grebe has been added to the province’s threatened species list, and that the Trumpeter Swan, a species on its way to recovery, has been removed from the list of threatened species.

:: Following up on the groundbreaking study, by University of Alberta biologist Colleen Cassady St. Clair of bird landings at toxic tailing ponds (see Bird News #70 from June), Dr. St. Clair is testing the use of laser pointers, as a complement to the noisemakers typically used to flush waterfowl, to keep birds away from from tailings ponds.

:: A pair of Peregrine Falcons have nested along the Pembina River for the first time in 50 years, and only 100 metres away from the spot where the previous pair nested in 1964.

:: eBird is looking for some missing bird species

:: Minneapolis’s City Council passed a resolution on Friday calling for the use of “fritted” glass — to help birds avoid collisions — at the new downtown Vikings Stadium, which has just begun construction. The group overseeing the building said using the special glass would add an additional $1.1 million to the project’s $1 billion cost. (See below, in Great posts in birding blogs this week for more on this.)

:: The last rehabilitation facility for songbirds and waterfowl in the Denver, Colorado area — Wild Bird Information and Rehabilitation of Denver, known as Wild BIRD — has to leave its current location by Sept. 1st because it’s improperly zoned, and the center has to raise nearly half a million dollars by Nov. 1st to be able to open in time for next year’s spring migration.

:: A story of bird evolution: Honey, I Shrank the Therapod!

:: Physicists at the Institute for Complex Systems in Rome have used high-speed cameras to film murmurations of starlings to study how and when individual birds know when and where to turn, “a behavior that mirrors certain quantum phenomena of liquid helium”.

:: As filming of the latest Star Wars movie began last week — in the middle of the breeding season for thousands of pairs of puffins, Manx Shearwaters, and Storm Petrels  — on the Irish island of Skellig Michael, a designated Unesco World Heritage site as well as a special protection area under the European Union habitats directive, Unesco, Birdwatch Ireland, and an independent archaeologist are expressing concern about the impact of a film crew on such a fragile environment.

Great posts in birding blogs this week:

:: From The Eyrie: Meet Alec Wyatt, 2014 ABA Young Birder of the Year

:: From Michael at The ABA Blog: 2014 AOU Check-list Supplement Is Out!

:: From Sharon at Birdchick: How Easy Is It To Fix The Viking Stadium? Very.

:: From Duncan at 10,000 Birds: Birding by Volunteering 

:: From Laurence at Butler’s BirdsTexas Birding: The Final Chapter and No Room for Tears

:: From Josiah at Birds in Your BackyardSpring Birds – Shorebirds

:: From Dan at Bird CalgaryTravel Tuesday – Bobolinks, babies and more south of Calgary

:: From Sharon at Bird Canada: Those Incredible Cormorants

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