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Past Shows

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What Do Birds Smell?

What do birds smell? Among the many birds of the world, some are, without doubt, prodigious smellers. Turkey Vultures have a supremely keen sense of smell to lead them upwind from great distances to their malodorous feasts. Gray Catbirds may use their sense of smell to help them on migration.... read more »

The White-crowned Pigeon

The Florida Keys extend from the state's peninsula like a string of pearls, and pearls they are, in their uniqueness and value. Stands of hardwood trees rise above the islands' level ground. These trees draw many birds of the Caribbean to the keys' tropical habitat. One of these is the White... read more »

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Mapping Songbird Migration with Geolocators

Devices called geolocators are giving us new insights into how, when, and where birds migrate. They record daily changes in light levels at different latitudes and longitudes by recording the time of each sunrise and sunset. And by attaching them to migrating birds - like this Red Knot -... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  migration, science

Birds in Shakespeare - With Rod Molzahn

Shakespeare's plays abound with birds. A Midsummer Night's Dream names seven birds in one short song. The Ousel-cock so black of hue, with orange tawny bill, The Throstle with his note so true, the Wren with little quill. ... The Finch, the Sparrow and the Lark, the plain song Cuckoo gray, Whose... read more »

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Brown Pelicans - What We're Learning

During the winter of 2009-2010, thousands of Brown Pelicans washed ashore on Pacific beaches, wet, cold, starving. Fierce storms, thought to be more frequent because of global climate change, probably made it difficult for the birds to feed. And storm-water runoff washed oil and pollutants into... read more »

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Midway Project - The Plastic Gyre, with Chris Jordan

Artist Chris Jordan brings a deep energy to a huge environmental problem - the accumulation of plastic debris in the world's oceans. He's photographing its effect on the Laysan Albatrosses of Midway Island. Adult albatrosses mistake pieces of plastic for squid and fish and feed them to their... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  nesting

Follow Island Girl with Bud Anderson

"Peregrine" means "wanderer." And Island Girl, a Peregrine Falcon, has made the 18,000-mile round-trip journey from the high arctic of Canada to southern Chile three times. Bud Anderson of the Falcon Research Group calls her "a master of the air." Using satellite telemetry, he invites people to... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  migration, science

Black-throated Sparrow Sings in the Desert

The Black-throated Sparrow thrives in the open, arid habitats of the American Southwest. Nature maintains such native landscapes with frequent but relatively cool-burning fires. But decades of fire suppression have altered nature's pattern, setting the stage for hotter, more destructive fires.... read more »

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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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Common Grackles Conservation

Despite their seeming abundance, the numbers of Common Grackles have shrunk by 60% in the last 40 years. Grackles prefer open landscapes with scattered trees, and their numbers peaked as eastern forests were cleared for agriculture in the 18th and 19th Centuries. As eastern forests grew back in... read more »

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