Questions tagged [ornithology]

Questions relating to the study of birds.

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7
votes
1answer
298 views

Bird identification: Warora, India

These photographs have been taken in Warora, India. Could someone please help identify this bird?
4
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1answer
860 views

Did birds descend from a single or multiple species of dinosaur?

It seems like there are mixed results because sometimes I read about a single missing link, like an archaeopteryx that somehow single-handedly explains all modern-day birds, but then I see conflicting ...
10
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1answer
287 views

What bird is this?

Location: Urban area near the Western Ghats, Kerala, South India. Date: 20th April, 2017 Current Climate: Hot and humid. Occasional rains. Brief Description: Not large, about the size of a house ...
9
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2answers
248 views

Owl identification

This evening I spotted this beautiful owl that had become the centre of concern of my neighbourhood birds. There was a joint commotion of the House crows, Jungle bablers, Bulbuls and Maynas, which is ...
1
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0answers
29 views

Does the cactus wren use a call to elicit insect prey movement and detection?

I will be referring primarily to a 2013 paper, If a bird flies in the forest, does an insect hear it?, and my own investigation. Bird flight sound frequencies overlap with the hearing range of most ...
2
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2answers
274 views

Why do birds sing? [closed]

Some birds sing. But why do they do it? Does singing gives them any biological advancement? Like in mating, communication etc. Or they do it for enjoyment like humans? ( Might be possible!) Edit: I ...
0
votes
1answer
151 views

What species is this bird (found in Cousset, Switzerland)?

A friend of mine saw that bird in Cousset, Switzerland but it doesn't look like anything we know or we've already seen before around here. Does anyone have an idea of what species it could be? Thank ...
1
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0answers
23 views

Why are some bird species placed as family Incertae sedis while some families are simply monotypic?

The Bananaquit and Western Spindalis are passerines of Incerta sedis. But species such as the Osprey, Limpkin and Olive Warbler belong to their own, monotypic, family. Why aren't Bananaquit and ...
9
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1answer
403 views

ID of a pair of similar-looking birds in NT, Australia

I spotted these two birds in Yellow Water, Kakadu NP. They were not in each other's vicinity, so it's not a pair in the sense that they were mates (not that I can tell at least :-). Their appearance ...
4
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0answers
187 views

Is there such thing as a bird with infrared vision? [duplicate]

I am writing a story and I specifically need a bird with infrared vision. Worst case scenario I just invent one but that would break the pattern in my story. The closest thing I have seen from ...
4
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1answer
135 views

Do Asian koel males communicate through calls?

Male Asian koels are heard making long koo-Ooo s which are returned by similar koo-Ooo s1 from some far away place. While the female makes short shrills. I never had the opportunity to see the ...
4
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1answer
127 views

Please identify bird call / animal call

What species is making this sound? You can hear it from the opening samples of this song: Earthgarden by Nada (2003). I wish to study the frequency distribution of the bird call.
4
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2answers
784 views

Did baby bird hair and mammalian hair convergently evolve?

Chicks (baby of chickens) and ducklings seem to have fine hairs, at least something that look like hairs to me. Most mammals have hairs, but reptiles, fish, or other animal groups do not have hairs as ...
6
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1answer
194 views

Identification of Sunbirds

Location: Asansol-Durgapur region, West Bengal, India Question: Do they belong to the same species? Note: I presume the bird in Pic-1 is a male Purple-rumped sunbird (Leptocoma zeylonica). I think ...
5
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1answer
3k views

Birds and Dinosaurs

This came up in an argument with some friends. I know that birds are direct descendants of dinosaurs, shown pretty clearly through the fossil record. However, is it proper to say that birds are ...
10
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4answers
573 views

What triggers the migration of robins?

I live in central Massachusetts, and have begun seeing robins, as we generally do in early March. The temperature is well below normal, though, and three feet of snow are covering the still-frozen ...
5
votes
1answer
153 views

Bird species ID in the Northern Territory, Australia

I was visiting Darwin, NT, Australia a few years back and I encountered this bird. I must say it was in Darwin's Botanical Gardens, so I can't be absolutely positive the Northern Territory is its ...
6
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3answers
2k views

Why do ostriches have wings? [duplicate]

Wings serve most birds for flying, or (as in penguins) for swimming. But ostriches, which exclusively use only their legs for locomotion, still have wings. Why?
2
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0answers
626 views

How do birds decide which branch to land on? [closed]

What factors do they weigh on? Shape, position of branch within the tree body/structure, fatigue, nearness to current position, etc. And how fast does a bird's brain and nervous system decide on this?...
4
votes
1answer
145 views

Identification of a Kakadu bird

This species of bird was spotted in Kakadu National Park, NT, Australia. It looks a bit like a lemon-bellied fly catcher, but I think my bird here is a tad bigger than the fly catcher, but I am unsure....
0
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1answer
70 views

Accurate surveys of urban pigeon and bird populations

I've been working on an assignment to develop mathematical models of urban pigeon populations. (As a disclaimer, this is part of a math course, not a biology course). I already understand the ...
1
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2answers
508 views

Bird identification [closed]

I got a statuette of a bird, carved of semi-precious minerals, but with its tail broken off. I'd like to restore it, rebuild the tail, but I'd first need to know how it should look like. Can you help ...
3
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2answers
474 views

White water bird with black 'hat'

The white bird in this picture, swimming between the ducks, was seen in Beijing, China, in januari 2017. It was cold: the water seen in the picture is liquid, but not far from this, the water was ...
3
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1answer
94 views

Help me find out what this bird is (description, no picture)

A while ago I read about this bird(s) whose species status was not confirmed. This was because they had a very large distribution and birds in adjacent population could breed with each other but birds ...
9
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1answer
206 views

How do you call “pocoya” bird in English?

I am translating a Spanish book and I have here a bird named in Spanish "pocoya", about which I know the following: 1) it flies at night 2) it makes sounds that allow to confuse it with an injured ...
6
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2answers
328 views

Bird ID (greenish passerine, Sacramento, CA)

Can anyone identify this small, greenish bird I saw in Sacramento, California, in May 2016? I tried using whatBird.com but wasn't able to come up with anything convincing. It looks a little like a ...
9
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1answer
4k views

Why is the Kakapo more attracted to humans than its own kind?

The Kakapo can be seen in this video by BBC. It is said that the species is strongly sexually attracted to humans. Why could this be the case?
1
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1answer
478 views

Why does a stomach come before the gizzard in birds?

Since the gizzard is for mechanical digestion, shouldn't that happen before the stomach digests the food with acids? (to make the morsels smaller)
1
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2answers
106 views

The Mystery of The Cretaceous' Songbirds

Before Passeriformes perched on the branches of our trees and sang their sweet, inspirational tunes, there was Enantiornithes, the "Opposite Birds". So far, we have discovered at least 80 species ...
1
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1answer
94 views

Small, brownish bird with reddish spot around eyes

This bird was seen in the Bourgoyen-Ossemeersen nature park, Ghent (Belgium) on December 3rd 2016. It is about the size of a common chaffinch. We couldn't get a very good picture of it, unfortunately....
0
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1answer
182 views

Why do an eagle’s feet look ridged?

Why are the knuckles of an eagles toes "ridged"? (I found these pictures to explain. One was from PBS and the other is one I found on Pinterest): I circled the parts of the toes/feet I meant in red ...
2
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1answer
51 views

What is the length of tunnels puffins dig in the Farne Islands?

I was watching this video and the host said that the puffins dig over 80km of tunnels in the Farne Islands. Is that true? I couldn't find a source to confirm that number.
3
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2answers
131 views

Trying to identify a baby bird seen in Palermo, Sicily

I'm trying to identify a baby bird that i saw in a pond in Palermo, Sicily, Italy. Unfortunately i did not see any parents! Any help is appreciated. Thanks, Robert
-3
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1answer
217 views

What properties of DNA and Chromosones do birds have? [closed]

What properties of DNA and Chromosones do birds have? How many chromosones do males and females have? Are the nucleotides the same (CGAT)? There are a lot of different kinds of birds. Maybe the DNA ...
1
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1answer
58 views

Do non-migratory canada geese still exhibit migration behaviors?

I have noticed that many of the geese in my region (NE US) remain overwinter. I also see many of what I guess (but am not sure) may be the same geese flying in migration patterns. One thing that makes ...
3
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1answer
157 views

What species is this bird?

This bird is a frequent "visitor" at a lake south west of Berlin, GERMANY. For more pictures here's a link: https://goo.gl/photos/ADVSZwbDQUpbomCBA
5
votes
1answer
577 views

How do non-dimorphic birds distinguish sex of possible partners/rivals?

Some birds, such as my pet Pionus chalcopterus, are not sexually dimorphic. People can't tell them apart, and even trained avian vets are not 100% certain with an inspection probing the vent. I ...
4
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2answers
528 views

Can someone identify this bird?

We recently found a nest in the back garden and a little bird inside. Can you help us identify it? The nest is quite small like the bird so we are wondering whether this is the parent or a baby chick. ...
6
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2answers
291 views

What animal / bird is this?

We heard this animal outside in Western Washington (Port Townsend area) during the late evening. I think it is a bird, but it honestly sounds sort of like some creepy woman singing or something. The ...
1
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0answers
114 views

Is it true that pigeons became less afraid of humans in recent years?

My grandfather had told me when I was a kid that at his time the pigeons would not approach humans closer than about 15 meters. At the time he said it the pigeons were approaching us not closer than ...
3
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0answers
43 views

Mechanics of Peregrine Falcon Dive Pull Up

There are loads of information on how fast the Peregrine Falcon dives, but aside from having specialized lungs, eyes, etc... to survive the dive. What mechanics does it use to pull out of such a dive,...
8
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1answer
327 views

How did birds survive the KT impact? [closed]

As I understand it, the ejecta resulting from the K-T impact (also known as the end-Cretaceous or Cretaceous-Tertiary extinction event) re-entered the atmosphere all over the world; the heat from ...
1
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0answers
148 views

How can I measure the curvature of bird's beak on the field?

I'm wondering if there is a standard tool to measure the bird's beak curvature. It seems that a spherometer wouldn't work because the beaks that I'm measuring are not circular but more parabolic. ...
3
votes
1answer
276 views

What is the name of the bird which feeds on penguin blood and meat in Tristan island?

I just watched a National Geographic documentary "Unseen Islands: Atlantic Arks" and there was some thing strange in Tristan island. Some small bird which changed its diet to feed on the blood and ...
1
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1answer
198 views

Taking care of Birds: Unwanted species scaring away a less common one from a birdhouse

Near my house, I have set up a birdhouse, which has become home to a pair of Oriental Magpie Robins. They are not a common species in Delhi, India, and are generally shy of human interaction and avian ...
5
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1answer
241 views

What Species of Duck/Waterfowl is this

I snapped a picture of this beaut in Irvine, CA, but I do not believe it is in the list given in "Ducks at a Distance: A Waterfowl Identification Guide" by Bob Hines (http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/...
6
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1answer
168 views

How much do urban pigeons move around cities?

Do they tend to live their lives in one area of the city or do they move around? For example, do pigeons born on London's Trafalgar Square live their whole lives centered around Trafalgar Square or ...
3
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2answers
211 views

How do small birds survive the winter?

I live in a region with cold winters (ca. -40 C) and many quite small birds (sparrows, crows, ducks) stay for the winter. How can the birds survive this? As I understand it, smaller bodies will be ...
18
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2answers
3k views

How can birds disperse seeds when they are able to digest them?

I've just read in a book that birds' guts can digest almost all the consumed seeds with the exception of mistletoe and loranthus (which stays stuck on the branches). On the other hand, I know that the ...
4
votes
1answer
342 views

Do blind birds bob their head when they walk?

Birds try to keep their heads still for short periods of time between steps to improve their ability to see. You can find amusing videos of chickens used as small video camera stabilizers. But does ...

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