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flight

Helping Birds Avoid Colliding with Glass

Birds colliding with glass is a real problem, especially during migration. Many cities have initiated Lights Out! programs, which helps. And there are things that homeowners can do, too. BirdNote's Chris Peterson interviewed Christine Sheppard of the American Bird Conservancy about the problem... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  flight, human interaction

Bald Eagles - Falling from the Sky!

Gregg Thompson recently photographed a pair of Bald Eagles tangling talons in a rural area outside Seattle. In an act of aggression, the eagles fly high up in the air, lock talons, and spin toward earth, releasing one another just before they hit the ground. If you think this is dizzying,... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  flight

The Platte River Crane Plane

Every day between early October and early November, two planes fly over the Platte River in Central Nebraska. The flight crews are searching for endangered Whooping Cranes, like the one pictured here with Sandhill Cranes. If Whooping Cranes are spotted, a ground crew monitors the birds’ behavior... read more »

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Emily Hears Great Horned Owls Call

I’m Emily, a fourth-grader at School in the Woods in Colorado Springs, Colorado. I love the Great Horned Owl’s call. Did you know that Great Horned Owls almost always hunt at night? First, they locate their prey from small movements on the ground. Next, they dive down at the perfect moment.... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  flight

The Things That Wings Can Tell You About a Bird

One of the reasons we birders are so fascinated by our feathered friends is certainly related to their mastery of the air. They can fly and our terrestrial species has always viewed flight as an enviable, sometimes magical ability. read more »

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Topics & Themes:  flight, plumage, science

Waterfalls, Caves, and White-collared Swifts

A flight of White-collared Swifts, huge swifts the size of small falcons, wing their way toward a small waterfall in Southern Mexico. Flying up to 100 miles per hour, they slice right through the waterfall into the cave beyond. White-collared Swifts are found from Mexico to Brazil. By day, they... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  flight, nesting

Swooping with Swifts

A White-throated Swift twists and turns, sailing through the air on black, scimitar-shaped wings that span 15 inches. Dashing headlong toward an unyielding wall, the bird disappears at the last second into a slender crevice. The White-throated Swift is aptly named. Flying at tremendous speed,... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  flight

Turkey Vulture - Sky Sailor

Although some of the Turkey Vulture's habits may evoke our disgust, these remarkable birds also inspire our awe. With wingspans approaching six feet, Turkey Vultures ride currents of air to make their spring and fall journeys, and to cover the miles of their home range in summer. Gliding on... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  flight

White-throated Swifts

A pair of White-throated Swifts twists and turns, sailing through the air. Dashing headlong across the canyon toward an unyielding wall, the birds disappear at the last second into a slender crevice. This swift is aptly named — and doubly so. The White-throated Swift is among the fastest of all... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  flight

The Eagle Eye

The eye of an eagle is one of the most sensitive of any animal, and may weigh more than the eagle's brain. The secret to the exceptional vision lies in its retina. The density of rods and cones within a raptor's eye may be five times that of a human's. As the Golden Eagle rides hot-air thermals... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  flight, language, science

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