Field Notes

Common Nighthawk

Common Nighthawk... Not a hawk, and not all that common, either!The Common Nighthawk is not, of course, a hawk, but belongs instead to the family Caprimulgidae. This includes Whip-poor-wills, Common Poorwills, Chuck-will’s-widows, and a wide variety of other species, all known as nightjars. They... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  ornithology

Celebrating National Wildlife Refuge Week - October 12 - 18

Theodore Roosevelt created the first national wildlife refuge in 1903. As of 2014, the refuge system has become the world’s premier public lands conservation network, with 560 refuges and 38 wetland management districts. Check out some of these BirdNote shows about wildlife refuges. The... read more »

Black-crowned Night-Heron - Night Stalker

 The enigmatic Black-crowned Night-Heron is an intriguing predator. During the day, this easily overlooked bird does nothing at all except stand perfectly still, while resting on a half-submerged log. Unlike its more active relative, the pterodactyl-like Great Blue, a giant among herons, it... read more »

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Biking Thousands of Miles ... for Birds

11,500That's how many miles Dorian Anderson had biked when I met him on the coast of Washington State in late August. He'd averaged nearly 50 miles a day since he started from his home state of Massachusetts on the morning of January 1. The weather on his first day was freezing with a stiff wind ... read more »

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Vultures! Nature's Clean-up Crew

Here's how we celebrated International Vulture Awareness Day! Thanks for joining us.King Vulture © Patricia van Casteren                             ... read more »

Catchin' Some Rays

EEKS! What's the matter with that bird, flopped on the ground. Is it sick or injured or something?Well, it's the last week of summer vacation, and most of us want to be outdoors, catching one last bit of sun. These birds are takin' in some rays, too. Yes, American Robins are among the top... read more »

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It's a bird, it's a plane, it's a ... fish?

My wife and I were on a whale-watching boat off Maui in May. I was on the side of the boat, scanning the horizon for birds. It was a pretty quiet day on the water bird-wise, just a White-tailed Tropicbird and Wedge-tailed Shearwater to keep me interested.My wife isn't a birdwatcher but she will... read more »

Duck Stamps: Not Just for Hunters

In the mid-1980s, my mother became one of the first employees of the Seattle Audubon Society. I was about six years old at the time, and I consequently spent the most impressionable years of my childhood around people who loved birds. They loved birds so much that they volunteered their time not... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  birdwatching, environmental champion

Traveling over 1,500 miles to experience "One Square Inch"

A BirdNote listener in Texas heard the story about Gordon Hempton’s One Square Inch of Silence, located in the Hoh Rain Forest in Olympic National Park. Known as the quietest place in the United States, the site is emblematic of the need to protect natural wilderness areas from human noise. She... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  reflection

Peregrine Falcon - Eating On the Wing

Gregg Thompson was recently out photographing shorebirds in Washington State and caught sight of an unusual behavior. "A juvenile Peregrine Falcon came out of the sun behind our backs with some type of shorebird in its talons. We were excited to see this action but mad that we'd missed... read more »

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