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nesting

Muggers - How Red-necked Grebes Got the Name

Few sights are as endearing as a mother Red-necked Grebe with three stripe-headed downy chicks nestled on her back. This species breeds along the shores of northern lakes, with many other grebes and ducks, including Mallards. Red-necked Grebes are excellent divers and can swim under water, coming... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  nesting

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

Bird Dad Awards: The Innovative, the Endearing, and the Less-Than-Admirable

On Mother's Day, we gave avian moms their due. Now it’s time for the bird dads. Just like with females, these guys employ many different strategies for raising their young. Here we present the “Father Knows Best Awards” for distinctive parenting, in honor of Father’s Day. Most Innovative Dad:... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  nesting

Heron Habitat Helpers

In Seattle, in a secluded ravine just steps away from a busy ship canal, nearly 100 pairs of Great Blue Herons return each year to nest. A group of citizens called Heron Habitat Helpers has helped this colony thrive. Their president, John “Hooper” Havekotte, credits the founders, Donna Kostka and... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  environmental champion, nesting

Mother's Day and Parental Care

It’s nesting season again, and that coincides with Mother’s Day. Pretty soon we’ll be seeing birds feeding young. Are they all mother birds? What are the males doing all this time? You might be surprised!One of the most common misconceptions among people watching birds is that parental care is... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  nesting

Sapsuckers and Hummingbirds

The sapsucker is a type of woodpecker that notches rows of small holes in trees, causing sap to well out. The birds eat the sugary liquid flowing from these sapwells. Tree sap is similar in sugar content to the nectar hummingbirds take from flowers. And it is no coincidence that just as the... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  nesting

People Helping Bluebirds - Interview with Barb Jensen

By the late 1950s, Western Bluebirds had disappeared from the San Juan Islands of Washington State. But in 2010, 84 young Western Bluebirds were banded on San Juan Island. How? Barbara Jensen, president of San Juan Islands Audubon, says: "The key to bringing this together has been the incredible... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  environmental champion, nesting

Hendricksons and the Violet-green Swallows

Ray and Gretchen Hendrickson made homes last spring for swallows in their garage in Leavenworth, Washington. When the birds had picked out a hole, they took a coffee can and tin snips, and cut down an inch around the top so they could bend the little flanges out. They tacked the can behind the... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  environmental champion, nesting

Wilson's Warbler Part IV

A week of non-stop singing attracts a female Wilson's Warbler to the male's territory at the edge of the forest. The female alone builds a nest, concealing it in mossy ground at the base of a shrub, or perhaps in a tussock of grass. She lays four eggs, which she incubates for 12 days. When the... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  migration, nesting

Trogons Nest with Wasps

The "Violaceous" Trogon (recently split into three species), which nests in Mexico, Central America, and northern South America, often excavates its dwelling within a large, active wasp or termite nest. It begins by devouring some of the insects, then digs a cavity large enough to accommodate the... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  nesting

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