Author Topic: Look! A bird!  (Read 9322 times)

Catherder

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Re: Look! A bird!
« Reply #225 on: June 03, 2020, 06:45:59 AM »
CBC again, ran the following about bird feeders:

Put the bird feeders away to avoid spread of deadly avian disease, expert warns

4 suspected cases of trichomonosis reported in purple finches across Nova Scotia
Elizabeth Fraser · CBC News · Posted: Jun 18, 2019 12:07 PM AT | Last Updated: 5 hours ago

Trichomonosis is caused by a microscopic parasite transmitted from bird to bird through moist bird seed, damp areas and bird baths.
A bird expert in the Moncton area is warning residents to put their bird feeders away to prevent diseases like trichomonosis from spreading.

"We've got to understand, we do not feed birds for the birds, we do that for us," said Alain Clavette.
"Birds do not need us to feed them with a non-natural source of food."

There have been at least four suspected cases of trichomonosis in purple finches across Nova Scotia this year.
Trichomonosis is caused by a microscopic parasite transmitted from bird to bird through moist bird seed, damp areas and bird baths. 
The disease particularly affects social, seed-eating birds, such as goldfinches and purple finches in Atlantic Canada.
The parasite infects a bird's upper digestive tract, liver and lungs, and makes it difficult for the bird to eat and breathe.
The parasite has been present in Atlantic Canada since 2007 and reports of bird deaths typically begin around mid-June. The disease doesn't affect humans or other animals, but it can spread to domestic birds and chickens.

Another outbreak of trichomonosis in N.S. has people here wondering what to do with their bird feeders. Ornithologist Alain Clavette says if you put a feeder out, you have to keep it really clean. He says "Birds do NOT need us to feed them...but need us to protect, create, and mimic their habitat."

Dr. Jim Goltz, New Brunswick's chief veterinarian, said his lab is looking into one bird death. But he said so far there haven't been any reported cases of the deadly infection this year.

Don't feed the birds

Clavette said bird feeders and bird baths can be dangerous for birds.
While he understands the appeal, Clavette said they can also cause the spread of other diseases, more window collisions and attract more predators, like red squirrels.

"We have to think about the unbalance that those feeders create in our bird population," said Clavette.
"They don't serve all the birds." Fifteen years ago, Clavette said he used to have 23 feeding stations at his home.
"I was known to feed birds really, really heavy," he said.
We've got to understand, we do not feed birds for the birds, we do that for us.

Since then, he's noticed a large decline in the diversity of the birds in his area, including thrushes and woodpeckers.
So he took all the bird feeders down.

"There were a lot of birds in the yard, but they were all the same thing, blue jays, goldfinch, doves, crows," he said.
The bird expert used the example of neotropical migratory birds, which breed in Canada and the United-States but spend the winter in warmer places like Mexico and Central America. He said those birds will travel up to 7,000 kilometres to raise their clutch in New Brunswick. But often times, they get their nests raided and eggs eaten by blue jays "that we fatten up with our feeders."
"This is just one example of the imbalance that will be created by these feeders," he said.

How to protect the birds

In about 40 years time, he said he expects bird feeders to be frowned upon.
If people want to protect birds living near their homes, he said they should mimic the bird's natural habitat by planting trees, flowers, making a small pond, having a section of grass that isn't mowed, letting bramble grow in the yard so insects can reproduce, allowing birds to feed.

And if people do want to keep their bird feeders or bird baths out, Clavette said they should be kept clean.
They can do this by cleaning feeders once a week using bleach, cleaning the area and raking old seeds nearby.

------

So it's up to you Nebo.


FishProf

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Re: Look! A bird!
« Reply #226 on: June 03, 2020, 07:32:08 AM »
Audubon Does Not Agree

Or maybe it does.  It is certainly better to have more wildlife friendly yards.  And to take care of bird feeders so they aren't filthy and wet.  And not overdo it (23 birds feeders in one yard? That's just an Avian Old Country Buffet and asking for trouble).
I don't give grades.  I merely record the consequences of your actions.  Or lack thereof...

mamselle

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Re: Look! A bird!
« Reply #227 on: June 03, 2020, 07:38:04 PM »
Apropos of nothing above, but the waterbird scene that just showed up on my rotating desktop series prompted it.

Waterbird, sighing, as he leaves the bar, alone again, after a disappointing evening picking up females....

  "I don't get it. I'm bright, my feathers fluff just right, I'm respectful...but they just don't flock to me like they used to."

Bartender:

   " Yeah, you'd think they'd go for you. Like they say, 'One good tern deserves another...'"

M.
Forsake the foolish, and live; and go in the way of understanding.

Reprove not a scorner, lest they hate thee: rebuke the wise, and they will love thee.

Give instruction to the wise, and they will be yet wiser: teach the just, and they will increase in learning.

AmLitHist

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Re: Look! A bird!
« Reply #228 on: June 05, 2020, 07:37:10 AM »
As I was getting dressed this morning I saw a huge turkey buzzard swooping around above the houses across the alley from us.  Then he lit on the flue of the neighbor's garage.

(With Jake the kitten living outside, I went out to make sure he was OK--and he was.  We then proceeded to water the flower beds before it gets hot today.)

Thursday's_Child

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Re: Look! A bird!
« Reply #229 on: June 05, 2020, 08:22:07 AM »
The Pine warblers raised a cowbird.  :(

I hope they still have time to try reproduction again this season.

Catherder

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Re: Look! A bird!
« Reply #230 on: June 08, 2020, 07:34:10 AM »

I haven't washed my windows for a couple of years because birds kept killing themselves by flying into them.  Up to now this tactic worked and there have been no bird strikes. But this year there are so many birds, particularly robins, chasing each other that at least 3 times a day I hear a thwack and run to check.  Until yesterday evening, no harm done--the thwacker flew away.  Yesterday, though a small bird, possibly a baby robin or a phoebe ( I couldn't tell because it was stretched out on its breast) lay on the ground while I grieved.

Happily it recovered after an hour.

Meanwhile two small chipmunks are teasing my cat, and I'm hearing more thwacks as she throws herself against the French doors in an attempt to reach them.

Thursday's_Child

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Re: Look! A bird!
« Reply #231 on: June 08, 2020, 08:19:11 AM »

I haven't washed my windows for a couple of years because birds kept killing themselves by flying into them.  Up to now this tactic worked and there have been no bird strikes. But this year there are so many birds, particularly robins, chasing each other that at least 3 times a day I hear a thwack and run to check.  Until yesterday evening, no harm done--the thwacker flew away.  Yesterday, though a small bird, possibly a baby robin or a phoebe ( I couldn't tell because it was stretched out on its breast) lay on the ground while I grieved.

Happily it recovered after an hour.

Meanwhile two small chipmunks are teasing my cat, and I'm hearing more thwacks as she throws herself against the French doors in an attempt to reach them.

This is all also true for me, although it was a young brown thrasher that required some recovery time and a rabbit that was way too close to the house!

The window strikes have all been on one with rather small panes, which suggests that it's just juvenile inexperience/exuberance and will stop as they gain more experience.


mamselle

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Re: Look! A bird!
« Reply #232 on: June 08, 2020, 08:29:05 AM »
There are clear, colored plastic stick-ons that will help birds "see" the windows and avoid them.

I can post the online source shortly: I use the birds, fish, and snowflakes as rewards for my youngest music students, so I go through a packet every few months. I think their parents appreciate the fact that they come off for cleaning and go back on (once the glass is dry again) with no trouble.

I also once saw a glass breezeway near some trees at a Science Center where the associated preschool had been commandeered into decorating silhouetted cut-outs that resembled hawks in flight, to keep the smaller birds from congregating in said trees (or flying into said breezeway) and becoming a hawk-cafeteria for the raptors that nested atop the buildings.

Complicated.

M.
« Last Edit: June 08, 2020, 09:18:21 AM by mamselle »
Forsake the foolish, and live; and go in the way of understanding.

Reprove not a scorner, lest they hate thee: rebuke the wise, and they will love thee.

Give instruction to the wise, and they will be yet wiser: teach the just, and they will increase in learning.

Catherder

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Re: Look! A bird!
« Reply #233 on: June 08, 2020, 08:37:53 AM »
I tried the stick-ons and if anything they just encouraged strikes. But a Toronto company has developed a full-window stick-on that is now widely used by office towers there.  Here's their website.

https://accessprotection1.com/industry-solutions/window-film-to-prevent-bird-strikes/

Treehugger

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Re: Look! A bird!
« Reply #234 on: June 08, 2020, 11:35:28 AM »
We travelled seven hours this past weekend through rain and an active tornado warning just to see some nesting Seaside Sparrows. It took us a while to find them and we got throughly drenched in the process, but now we know that Seaside Sparrows sing in the middle of the day even during rainstorms. The whole thing was crazy, yet also oddly fulfilling.

nebo113

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Re: Look! A bird!
« Reply #235 on: June 15, 2020, 03:18:10 AM »
Little downy in the house.  Left doors open all night but it's terrified.  Now must make one last attempt to get it out.  Cross your fingers.

Treehugger

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Re: Look! A bird!
« Reply #236 on: June 15, 2020, 04:08:37 AM »
Little downy in the house.  Left doors open all night but it's terrified.  Now must make one last attempt to get it out.  Cross your fingers.

How did the Downy get in? Can you lure it out by putting a feeder by the door within sight of the Downy? Or maybe you can lay a trail of birdseed?

nebo113

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Re: Look! A bird!
« Reply #237 on: June 16, 2020, 05:45:43 AM »
Little downy in the house.  Left doors open all night but it's terrified.  Now must make one last attempt to get it out.  Cross your fingers.

How did the Downy get in? Can you lure it out by putting a feeder by the door within sight of the Downy? Or maybe you can lay a trail of birdseed?

I did get it out, finally.  Required a ladder, removing items from a high ledge in main area with cathedral ceiling, soft cloth over poor little thing, who flew away as soon as I took it outside and opened my hands.

As for how it got in:  Blame it on Henri, also known as TLB (the little bastard), a youthful 20 pound bundle of canine exuberance who came into my life in January.  Because he's so energetic, I've taken to leaving the front and back doors open so he can go in and out on his own.  Porches run the length of the house and the side yard, off the back porch, is fenced.  I had a strip of cloth hanging down from the back door sill to prevent avian incursions but didn't work, so now have three strips hanging down, which I think will work.  It's all rather awkward, for the feline, the canine, and the avians....but it is what it is.

Oh yeah...at least twice, hummingbirds have gotten their beaks stuck in screens on the windows on the back porch.  They back out and are fine.

Guess all of this is the origin of "birdbrain."  ~)

nebo113

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Re: Look! A bird!
« Reply #238 on: July 05, 2020, 05:19:49 AM »
Wrens still nesting on front porch, though my loudmouth canine barks at imaginary enemies in the yard, making nesting a rather unsettling experience, I would think.

Catherder

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Re: Look! A bird!
« Reply #239 on: July 07, 2020, 01:58:12 PM »
 I just startled a large great blue heron on my front lawn. I see them on the back lawn at the edge of the lake all summer but although they fish in the creek that runs along the front of the property they rarely hang out on that lawn.

This one had a foot-long catfish in its beak, but the slight creak of my door opening as I took a better look scared it, and it grabbed its catch and flew off.