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Past Shows

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Julenek - Birds at Christmas

Birds are an important part of Christmas in Norway. On Christmas Eve, sheaves of wheat or oats are tied to a post or hung on the door, to feed the birds on Christmas morning. This bundle of grain, the julenek, has become a symbol of Christmas in Norway, and a julenek hangs on nearly every door,... read more »

RELATED
Topics & Themes:  birdfeeding

Snake-Eagles Are Awesome

When a soaring Short-toed Snake-Eagle spots a delicious snake, it swoops down, grabs it with its talons, then tears off the snake’s head. Still on the wing, it swallows the entire snake, head first. Smaller than Bald Eagles, they live mainly in Africa and have legs and toes covered in thick... read more »

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Strange Twins - Purple and Rock Sandpipers

On the north Atlantic coast, a slate-gray sandpiper picks among the barnacles and mussels that encrust a jetty’s massive boulders. At the same moment, a parallel scene unfolds on the north Pacific Coast. A slate-colored sandpiper emerges from the salt spray to forage over a windswept jetty. These... read more »

RELATED
Topics & Themes:  ecology

Morning in Oaxaca

A winter morning in Oaxaca, Mexico—a great time to visit old friends who spent the summer in the United States. Yellow-rumped Warblers and Western Tanagers—northern summer-nesters that winter in western Mexico—mingle with resident Berylline Hummingbirds, Gray Silky-Flycatchers, and this Crescent... read more »

RELATED
Topics & Themes:  migration

Long-Distance Migration Takes Fuel and Water

Long-distance migration can be hard on a bird’s body. For example, this Swainson’s Thrush might migrate between northern Canada and South America, twice a year. In the weeks before such a long journey and during key stopovers en route, the thrush eats like crazy to put on fat. But during the... read more »

RELATED
Topics & Themes:  ecology, migration

Earthworms - A Superfood in Cold Storage

This American Robin has caterpillars and an earthworm in its beak. But which food source is the real prize? Everyday earthworms are higher in protein than beef or chicken. You’d have to eat about a pound of soybeans to equal the protein in just three ounces of earthworms. They’re also high in... read more »

RELATED
Topics & Themes:  ecology

Northern Goshawk - Esteemed Bird of Prey

The Northern Goshawk is one of the most fearsome and admired of all birds of prey — and the largest hawk of the northern forest. Since at least medieval times, falconers have regarded the goshawk as a bird of great distinction. Attila the Hun even wore its image on his helmet. The boreal forest... read more »

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Spruce Grouse - Perfect for the Boreal Forest

In the boreal forest, winter temperatures routinely drop to 30 degrees below zero. Birds that spend the winter in this harsh domain rely on remarkable adaptations to survive. The Spruce Grouse is one such bird. Most Spruce Grouse remain here all year. In the snow-free summer, they forage on the... read more »

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The Legendary Phoenix

The ancient Greeks and Egyptians described a mythical bird called the Phoenix, a magnificent creature that was a symbol of renewal and rebirth. According to legend, each Phoenix lived for 500 years, and only one Phoenix lived at a time. Just before its time was up, the Phoenix built a nest and... read more »

RELATED
Topics & Themes:  history

Pigeon Flocks Follow the Leader

The flocking movements of homing pigeons are governed by a pecking order. Higher-ranked birds have more influence over how the flock moves. Leading birds change directions first, and followers swiftly copy the leader's movements. And birds at the front of the flock tend to make the navigational... read more »

RELATED
Topics & Themes:  flight

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