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Tool use in birds - on fishing Herons and Black Kites

Tool use in birds - on fishing Herons and Black Kites

Bob GosfordJun 26, 20161 Comment

"We think it is incredible this bird thought out the whole operation from catching a crab to converting into a bigger prey of a fish--and resisted the temptation to just eat the crab," Suzanne Hills and Chris Cromey.

Camp Dogs of the Week: AMRRIC's Kalumburu Vet and Education Program needs your doggy donations

Camp Dogs of the Week: AMRRIC's Kalumburu Vet and Education Program needs your doggy donations

Bob GosfordApr 14, 2016

Veterinary programs improve the health of dogs, so that they are less prone to parasites and have better body condition. Desexed animals live longer and healthier lives. Through surgical desexing, we prevent unwanted puppies; fewer dogs means less competition for food.

Why Malheur NWR matters and

Why Malheur NWR matters and "armed, out of state militia groups" don't

Bob GosfordJan 5, 20162 Comments

The occupation of Malheur by armed, out of state militia groups puts one of America’s most important wildlife refuges at risk. It violates the most basic principles of the Public Trust Doctrine and holds hostage public lands and public resources to serve the very narrow political agenda of the occupiers. The occupiers have used the flimsiest of pretexts to justify their actions.

Strider's Almanac, Vol. 1, Pt 2: How the growing season began in late 2012

Strider's Almanac, Vol. 1, Pt 2: How the growing season began in late 2012

Bob GosfordDec 20, 2015

Depending upon the thickness of the leaf litter layer, and the rate at which the rain falls, anything between the first 3 to 12 mm of a rainfall will be completely absorbed by the leaf litter and hardly a drop will find its way through to the soil beneath it. For this reason we can discount all of the cases or drops of rain and traces in the gauge as fairly irrelevant to what is going on in the soil.

Do these raptors spread fire in the Australian savanna?

Do these raptors spread fire in the Australian savanna?

Bob GosfordOct 13, 20154 Comments

Use of fire as a tool is normally considered to be restricted to humans, and hence to have played an extremely important role not only in human societal change but also in the large-scale modification of landscapes across the world. But what if animals other than humans exhibit pyrophilic behavior?

Muralkarra (Crow) by Frank Malkorda

Muralkarra (Crow) by Frank Malkorda

Bob GosfordSep 8, 2015

Crow is a creature who is intensely curious about everything to do with funerals and so, as befits their elaborate ceremonial, he is a skilled dancer and musician. He perches on hollow log coffin, called there by two names, Badurra and Maraych, just as, in fact, Djambidj owners have crow painted on the top of their ossuaries.

Not fair? UK rejects visa for Ugandan bird guide to attend Bird Fair 2015

Not fair? UK rejects visa for Ugandan bird guide to attend Bird Fair 2015

Bob GosfordAug 18, 2015

Herbert Byaruhanga: "No visa for my UK trip to attend the British Birdwatching Fair. I have been to UK many times. I have no interest of staying in UK. I was going for less than 7 days. UTB made it clear to them that I am a bird guide who will be at the Uganda Stand and will make a talk about Birding in Uganda."

Snake of the Week: Great Basin Gopher Snake

Snake of the Week: Great Basin Gopher Snake

Bob GosfordMay 23, 2015

Alerted to danger, the snake coils up, vibrates its tail and hisses a warning. The Gopher snake can also spread and flatten its head, thereby resembling a rattler even more. An unsure predator mistakes this behavior and the somewhat triangular head of the Gopher snake for a rattlesnake and backs off from its pursuit."

The Rembarrnga law for birds -

The Rembarrnga law for birds - "all the birds are your relations"

Bob GosfordMay 23, 2015

That’s what this part of Arnhem Land is like. Other places are all right but here in the middle you’ve got to talk to the country. You can’t just travel quiet, no! That’s law for the centre of Arnhem Land.

The loudest bird in the world? The Blue-winged Kookaburra, Dacelo leachii

The loudest bird in the world? The Blue-winged Kookaburra, Dacelo leachii

Bob GosfordMar 8, 20152 Comments

These guys just don't give a shit, and have a great time doing it. I don't know if this species is the loudest bird in the world but I reckon even the FA-18s from the nearby Tindal RAAF base would be hard-pressed to cut through the Blue-winged Kookaburra's cacophonous clatter at close quarters.