Friday, April 30, 2010

Birders, please stop wasting gas.

That oil spill was caused by every one of you people who drive your friggin' cars mile after mile. Those of you who do it to watch us birds--get real! Don't you see that if you really cared about us, you'd be protecting habitat everywhere, so you could see us in your own backyards during migration? Now thousands of us are going to die, breathing fumes as we migrate over the Gulf, maybe even from smoke inhalation or flying into flames if they set the oil on fire, and from landing, exhausted after a long flight, in the oiled areas where we expect to find clean and abundant food. All because you humans use so damned much oil.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

I made it across the Gulf last week.

Whew! But a lot of my friends still have to cross. It's hell in a good year, what with our having to flap the whole 600+ miles without a moment's rest--imagine it right now with the fumes, and the smoke and flames, too, if they start burning the oil. Yuck. Think BP will reimburse us for our losses? Don't hold your breath. (Unless you're flying over the Gulf right now--then you might need to hold your breath for a long time.)

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

We Tufted Titmice made it onto The Daily Show!!

Tufted Titmouse
Originally uploaded by Laura Erickson
Last night, Jon Stewart complained about Goldman-Sachs "Fabulous Fab" being dismissed as "immature," saying that "I tend to think of that word (immature) more when you're looking at a book about birds and you laugh cuz you see the word "titmouse." Tragically, he made a pretty good (for a human) imitation of our song, while missing out on a golden opportunity for more immature, sophomoric humor, since so many people claim we say "peter peter peter."

So just how are we nocturnal migrants supposed to get across the Gulf this year?

Scarlet Tanager
Originally uploaded by Laura Erickson
We navigate by the stars, and other lights confuse us. A lot of my friends have bonked into lights on a measly cruise ship--a LOT of us are going to be killed flying into flames if the Coast Guard really sets the oil spill afire. Even without that, imagine breathing those fumes while running a measly 26-mile marathon, and multiply that to the arduous ordeal that flying nonstop, a minimum of over 600 miles, over the Gulf of Mexico! How can we possibly survive THAT?

You humans and your friggin' energy demands are killing us, and it's a big f*ck*ng deal. "Drill, baby, drill" indeed.

Can't a guy get any privacy?

Northern Flicker
Originally uploaded by Laura Erickson
Okay, so I was engaging in a bit of hanky-panky with my sweetie yesterday, when this whole mob of people on a "Duluth Audubon Warbler Walk" came upon us. Holy crap! I mean, they kept their distance, but do you know what it does to a guy's technique when 8 or 10 pairs of binoculars are trained on him??!! At least we were behind enough branches that this stupid woman couldn't take my photo until after we were done and I'd flown to this branch. But gee whiz. We birds never feel truly alone and away from people anymore.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

John Schoenherr: 1935 - 2010

We birds will miss the way you conveyed our beauty to people (and raccoons). Rest in peace.

I don't pay taxes

Whooping Crane
Originally uploaded by Laura Erickson
That's because I don't earn money. But I'm eternally grateful for the people who do, because you are the ones who pay to keep water clean for all of us, and ensure that we Whoopers have homes and safe travels. Thank you.

I'm also grateful for everyone who buys a Duck Stamp and for everyone who makes special contributions to conservation. When it comes to us endangered birds, it really does take a village.

Pop quiz

Harris's Sparrow
Originally uploaded by Laura Erickson
Who is the only songbird (well, the only songbird species) that breeds exclusively in Canada?

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Please vote for All About Birds to win a Webby!

American Robin
Originally uploaded by Laura Erickson
It's my claim to fame--my picture is on the website!! Vote here.

Please don't deport me

Rufous Hummingbird
Originally uploaded by Laura Erickson
Yes, I crossed the Mexican border without a passport. But give a guy a break.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Well, duh!

Study Says Overuse Threatens Gains From Modified Crops
Published: April 13, 2010
The first comprehensive assessment of genetically modified crops called for national attention to the problem of overuse.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Don't got rhythm

So what if I have no sense of rhythm. I still love to play my drums.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Thank you for littering!

House Sparrow
Originally uploaded by Laura Erickson
We love how you people subsidize us.

Your smoking is bad for us birds... least when you toss your butts out the window on a dry, windy night. C'mon, people. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to realize that is not just stupid--it's criminal negligence.

Baseball players steal their best ideas from us!

Tree Swallow
Originally uploaded by Laura Erickson
You know how baseball players put black stuff on their cheekbones so their faces don't reflect light into their eyes? Ahem. We figured that out long, long before baseball. And they NEVER give us credit. (We're also better at catching flies!)

Easter Sunday with the Bickersons

Tree Swallow
Originally uploaded by Laura Erickson
"I TOLD you the weather would be nice when we got here."
"Mark my words. It's gonna get cold again."
"You're such a pessimist!"
"You're so stupid!"
"I know you are, but what am I?"