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migratory challenges

Red Knot Migration

Thanks to radio transmitters, scientists have vastly increased their knowledge of Red Knot migration patterns. For example, the vast majority of Red Knots on the Pacific Coast rely on a small number of places to rest and feed during spring migration from Mexico to the Arctic. Those locations... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  migration

Long-distance Migration - A House of Cards?

Scott Weidensaul, author of Living on the Wind, says “. . . the longest, most amazing, most awe-inspiring migrations are the ones that are most delicately balanced. And if you perturb any of the supports on which it depends, the whole thing collapses like a house of cards.” Fortunately, the U.S.... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  ecology, migration

Swainson's Warbler

On a fine May morning in Great Smoky Mountains National Park, a song issues from within a rhododendron thicket. It's a Swainson's Warbler — one of North America's shyest birds. These birds forage quietly on the ground, flipping over leaves to expose and capture insects. They scurry away, calling... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  vocalization

Migration

Migration happens once every year. And then again maybe six months later.Depending on several factors, at most times of the year, there are many birds on the move. Some are merely altitudinal migrants, descending when the weather turns fowl in the mountains. The large majority undertake a twice... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  migration

High Island, Texas

Each spring, millions of songbirds migrate north from the New World tropics to nest in North America. It takes 15 hours on average to cross the roughly 500 miles of the Gulf of Mexico. If wind or rain slows the crossing, the birds are worn out and famished when they reach land. What will they... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  migration

People Caring for IBAs - With Patrick Comins

Patrick Comins, Director of Bird Conservation for Audubon Connecticut, explains why Long Beach and its adjoining salt marsh near the town of Stratford are so important for birds. Nearly 300 species of birds, including Greater and Lesser Yellowlegs like these, have been recorded at Great Meadows,... read more »

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Dry Tortugas Archipelago

From a bird's perspective, the Dry Tortugas in the Gulf of Mexico can be a life-saver. Millions of migratory songbirds fly north across the Gulf and Caribbean each spring, headed for North America. If they run into heavy wind and rain blowing down from the continent, the Dry Tortugas provide... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  migration

Dancing with Birds - With Heather Murphy and Rhona Baron

Like migratory birds, the dances of North America travel from nation to nation. Beautifully colored songbirds may breed in the far north, but they winter in Central and South America. During a Zumba class, Heather Murphy realized this combination of dance, music, and culture might be used to... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  migration, music

Rainwater Basin

For 20,000 years, spring rains and melting snow have filled the playas of the Rainwater Basin of south-central Nebraska. As winter ends, ten million waterfowl rest and feed here before continuing north. The seasonal wetlands form a funnel for birds heading from the Gulf Coast and points south to... read more »

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Operation Migration

Unlike many other birds that have an inherent sense of direction and destination, young Whooping Cranes have to learn their migration route from the adults. Enter Operation Migration and ultralight aircraft to lead them on their journey! Fortunately, the young cranes need to be shown the way only... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  migration

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