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IVORY-BILLS  LiVE???!  ...

=> THE blog devoted to news and commentary on the most iconic bird in American ornithology, the Ivory-billed Woodpecker (IBWO)... and... sometimes other schtuff.
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"....The truth is out there."

-- Dr. Jerome Jackson, 2002 (... & Agent Fox Mulder)

“There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy.”

-- Hamlet

"All truth passes through 3 stages: First it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as self-evident."

-- Arthur Schopenhauer






Wednesday, March 02, 2016

 

-- Back To 2005 --

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Today, re-running an entry I posted here over 10 years ago!
Recently Mark Michaels linked to an older Geoff Hill review of a Noel Snyder monograph where he [Snyder] argues that hunting played a much greater role in the demise of the Ivory-bill than generally recognized (definitely worth reading):
http://www.bioone.org/doi/pdf/10.1525/cond.2008.8658

I made the same essential argument here a decade ago (in a different post), and to give people their due, Mike Collins made a similar argument as far back as 1997. At the time I utilized this quote from T. Gilbert Pearson, one of the foremost naturalists of his day:
"The reduction in abundance of this species [IBWOs] is due most probably to persecution by man, as the species has been shot relentlessly without particular cause except curiosity and a desire for the feathers or beaks." (National Geographic Magazine, April 1933)
The reason I bring it up now is to again reiterate my belief that very little that is concluded in the literature about the behavior or needs of Ivory-billed Woodpeckers, based on Tanner's work, can be assumed true for currently surviving IBWOs. I don't even believe Tanner's conclusions for the Singer Tract birds automatically generalizes to any Ivory-bills that then survived in Texas, Florida, South Carolina, or elsewhere -- we just don't know -- the sample size, studied largely by a lone individual, is simply too small to be very meaningful (p.s., I DON'T blame Tanner for this; it is common practice in field biology to draw over-reaching conclusions from inadequate sample-sizes -- nor do I mean to imply that the historical studies lack any merit, but only that they must be viewed cautiously, instead of as gospel fact).

Anyway, here's what I wrote, more generally, back in 2005, in the post "Science and Sample Size":
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One of the fundamental tenets of science methodology concerns having adequate sample sizes from which to draw conclusions/generalizations. In the years since James Tanner's dissertation on the Ivory-bill (based on but a handful of birds), notions that Tanner himself often recognized as tentative became hardened into unchallenged dictums without a good basis for doing so. There is in fact little that can be stated with certainty about the Ivory-bill's diet, behavior, habits, or requirements for survival, even though such statements are rife in the literature. (If one were to intensely study a dozen people and then write a report generalizing to the entire human species the weakness would be readily apparent.) This is all especially true given that any Ivory-bills still around today may in fact have survived specifically BECAUSE they came from individuals with significantly DIFFERENT characteristics/behavioral traits from their brethren, which increased survivability for themselves and their offspring. At least Tanner got it right at the end of his original introduction:

"The chief difficulty of the study has been that of drawing conclusions from relatively few observations... My own observations of the birds have been entirely confined to a few individuals in one part of Louisiana... the conclusions drawn from them will not necessarily apply to the species as it once was nor to individuals living in other areas. The difficulty of finding the birds, even when their whereabouts was known, also limited the number of observations. Especially was this true in the non-breeding season. With these considerations in mind, one must draw conclusions carefully and with reservations." (italics added)
The problem with our knowledge of Ivory-bills is not simply how little we know, but rather how much we think we know that might just be utterly wrong for any birds remaining today...
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Comments:
Hunters are undoubtedly still a major threat to remaining ivorybills. Consider the duck hunter or your average backwoods teenager with a rifle who sees a black and white "pintail" flying over a river, pond, or through the woods. It isn't hard to imagine him bringing it down just to have a look at it. And if he discovers he's just killed a critically endangered species protected by federal law, it isn't likely that he'd tell anyone.
 
CT great post..............I have finally finally found the evidence that a significant survey data set by a few large, formal groups that produced mostly negative presence data was likely flawed .
We just increased our hourly contribution to the IBs saga ten-to fifty fold by potentially eliminating several thousand hours of false-negative presence data or point survey data. We may have just put another 500,000 + acres plus back in play as not properly looked at. More to come.

Great work by CT and all who post here.


IBSEARCHER
 
Pwolf questioned the source of my remarks on IBs preferring to nest in seasonally flooded areas. He seemed upset if this was correct as it's one more ecological reason that hinder some low boles in RIPARIAN CORRIDORS from supporting beetle larvae (they have no gills) just when IBs may need larvae for nestlings close to the nest.

Note that all or almost all the best ~20 sightings from Kulivan on have been in river bottoms that are seasonally flooded mainly in the late winter and early spring. There are dozens of sources on this preference (see Hill, Fangsheath, Tanner below for just a few).

Searcher (me) said "IBWOs prefer to nest high in trees in areas that are often seasonally flooded; this is some protection from terrestrial predators . High water can kill cerambycid larvae below the flood line and shape the biotic community of the lower bole in RIPARIAN CORRIDORS. Adult beetles and their eggs can also be killed if they are submerged."

Wolf said " Interesting... Can you source that first sentence? And in southern forests, about which, Freddie, you know very little, flooding is seldom "seasonal" (except in large river bottoms), instead is often short term and related to random heavy rainfall events, which can occur at any time of year."

And

Wolf completely missed the words "RIPARIAN CORRIDORS" in my original paragraph. In many southern states the average rainfall on days it does rain, is greater in the first 6-7 months of the year than later in the year; surface water transpiration rates of mature forests are much greater in summer than spring drawing down flood waters much quicker then.

Also consider seasonal spring rains from numerous northerly states and even Canada can affect even ID land in LA as the vadose zone perks up due to hydrostatic pressure from OD land.

I have seen plenty of high crayfish turrets on ID LA forests.

IBSEARCHER
 
The reviewed paper by Snyder linked in the post was expanded upon in the book "The Travails of Two Woodpeckers", which I'm sure most followers of this blog know, but I thought I'd mention it for the few that don't.

Elaborating on my thoughts above, the level of hunting threats in a area are obvious even without seeing any ivorybills. In forests frequented by hunters, the deer and pileated are wary, and wild pigs even more so. Recently, I walked through an area where I almost never see hunters or evidence of them. Deer stared at me from a few hundred feet before walking off, a pair of pileated flew within twenty feet of me landing on the bole of a tree just a few feet off the ground before flying off, and the wild pigs snorted at me and trotted off fairly slowly compared to the sudden rush through the undergrowth a hundred yards away that I see from them elsewhere.

Why do I mention all that? Because I don't see why ivorybills would be any different than the species I mentioned. In one area with a lot of hunters, they may be much more wary, and in an area without hunting pressure they may be far less wary. Is there any reason their behavior wouldn't change in the same ways as other species, depending on the environment?

If I'm wrong, someone educate me. I'm not a biologist, so put it in layman language if you can.
 
The sources got dropped off my prior post.

There are dozens of sources on this surface water preference (see Hill, Fangsheath, Tanner below for just a few). Fang thougth it very important range wide.

Fangsheath said in 2007:


Dr. Hill's book contains important information for ivory-bill searchers, no matter what state they are in. General patterns begin to emerge and these can help guide our efforts. Large cavity trees are clustered within his study site. They are rare on the higher ground, the "hammocks," generally concentrated in areas that are inundated when the river rises. These areas are also where their sightings and audio hits are concentrated. The clustering is similar to my findings in La., large cavities are rare in the higher areas and are very clustered. It also corresponds to what Tanner found in the Singer Tract - "Almost all of the nests I have seen in the Singer Tract, Louisiana, have been located in parts of the woods where the ground was at least partly covered with water during the nesting season, late winter and early spring."

this is a repeat from here down of the prior post

Pwolf questioned the source of my remarks on IBs preferring to nest in seasonally flooded areas. He seemed upset if this was correct as it's one more ecological reason that hinder some low boles in RIPARIAN CORRIDORS from supporting beetle larvae (they have no gills) just when IBs may need larvae for nestlings close to the nest.

Note that all or almost all the best ~20 sightings from Kulivan on have been in river bottoms that are seasonally flooded mainly in the late winter and early spring. There are dozens of sources on this preference (see Hill, Fangsheath, Tanner below for just a few).

Searcher (me) said "IBWOs prefer to nest high in trees in areas that are often seasonally flooded; this is some protection from terrestrial predators . High water can kill cerambycid larvae below the flood line and shape the biotic community of the lower bole in RIPARIAN CORRIDORS. Adult beetles and their eggs can also be killed if they are submerged."

Wolf said " Interesting... Can you source that first sentence? And in southern forests, about which, Freddie, you know very little, flooding is seldom "seasonal" (except in large river bottoms), instead is often short term and related to random heavy rainfall events, which can occur at any time of year."

And

Wolf completely missed the words "RIPARIAN CORRIDORS" in my original paragraph. In many southern states the average rainfall on days it does rain, is greater in the first 6-7 months of the year than later in the year; surface water transpiration rates of mature forests are much greater in summer than spring drawing down flood waters much quicker then.

Also consider seasonal spring rains from numerous northerly states and even Canada can affect even ID land in LA as the vadose zone perks up due to hydrostatic pressure from OD land.

I have seen plenty of high crayfish turrets on ID LA forests.

IBSEARCHER


 

Hello Houston,

The answer to the oft asserted reversing of IB wariness in a few generations is somewhere in the search archives here. Perhaps you can find more past info and collate whats been said of IBs so far.

First lets accept the likely truth that today's IB is the result of starting with for example 10,000 animals and then shooting every one you could for 200 years with a hopefully much lower frequency of shooting death in the last twenty or more years. Repeated hunting on a decreasing population base is a very severe, non-stochastic (non-random) event. It's the rapid and almost complete removal of certain traits and the genes that carried those traits may no longer be in the population's genotype at all anymore; they are gone forever (or in a child's lifetime at least). Meaning the wariness is not only learned it's more importantly to the potentiality of reversing, innate.

All IBs today are likely one of the most skittish animals alive and may flee from stimuli that at one time was recognized by all of them as being innocuous.

My quick write on genetics (there is much more to this) is that wariness is a complex trait stored on multilocus. The phenotype (outward behavior, etc.) is stored on many gene alleles (different gene sequences, multilocus) with a process to recreate these many different genes concurrently to reverse the new phenotype expression of wariness not accomplished as easily, simply and as rapidly as some think.

Mutation creates new genes; mutation rates are very low and then you must have generational selection compounding over many GNR8SNs to spread the rare beneficial mutation around to some or most of the remaining animals. This can take hundreds of years in slow reproducing pops like we have here, and not in deer, etc.

There are many norms of reaction that even the same animal let alone a population can express differently at times depending on their age, environmental conditions, hormone levels and much more, meaning the recreation of an animals genotype after intense unidirectional selection is not possible to any great extent in many, many generations let alone several generations.

Deer and other animals have had a different complex pattern of selection, panmixing, gene flow, underpopulation and overpopulation that may not completely eliminate the all or some of the pertinent loci for optimal foraging allowing for much more behavioral plasticity.

So the assumption that one takes away the predators/guns and the precolonial traits of IBs just magically appear has something missing.

By the way this all may be related to why we have not seen any rebound in IBs population in ~ 12 years or more.

Some modern searchers will not accept the strong possibity that the short term reversible of wariness is not going to occur easily or quickly because of genetic priciples. They think some behaviors are simple switches----predators gone---switch on. This is a big mistake and you can see it in the way they talk, write and search.

Sorry about the writing, I do not know how to relate on these subjects without the needed jargon.

What's your thoughts on how one gets from eliminated complex gene communities to recreating assertive behavioral genes when they have been essentially eliminated from the starting gene pool of IBs?

What are you working on?

thanks ib searcher



 
If I understand you correctly, there have been changes to the genes of the entire IB population over time due to hunting pressure. The wariness is locked in for the long-term, regardless of the local absence of hunting pressure. I'm not sure I buy that, but appreciate your taking the time to explain. Thank you!
 
Hi Houston; re: "If I understand you correctly, there have been changes to the genes of the entire IB population...":

It's more subtle than that, not representing "changes to the genes" because the genes were ALWAYS there; natural selection merely alters their predominance: a trait like "wariness" is multifactorial and will fall along a continuum (i.e., it is NOT binary, wary/unwary). Suppose that individual IBWOs ranked from 1 to 10 on a 'wariness' scale (10-very wary, 1 not very wary). Over time, wherever there was hunting/predatory pressure (essentially EVERYWHERE since native Americans hunted IBWOs before white men even got here), the "8-9-10" birds would tend to survive and reproduce (passing along their genes) at a higher rate than the "1-2-3" birds. The process may have begun centuries ago -- the resulting birds today haven't necessarily 'changed their genes' but simply represent a higher proportion from one end of the original continuum that always existed.
It is also possible that adult IBWOs "learned" certain survival behaviors along the way, which they then "taught" to their offspring, but the genetic/natural-selection argument is simpler than that.
 

ib searcher wrote "By the way this all may be related to why we have not seen any rebound in IBs population in ~ 12 years or more." Are you suggesting there is a rebound underway, but that it isn't visible because the birds are so elusive?

"What's your thoughts on how one gets from eliminated complex gene communities to recreating assertive behavioral genes when they have been essentially eliminated from the starting gene pool of IBs?" I don't know, as I'm still trying to understand, starting from a woefully low level of knowledge of science and genetics.

"What are you working on?" Not sure I understand what you're asking, but I'm infrequently searching in Texas and beyond.

__________________

Thanks for the additional comments, Ct. I better understand what the two of you are saying.

Do you think the birds in the Singer Tract were the last of those in the 1-6 range? How else would you explain their becoming accustomed to having Tanner observe them?
 
"Do you think the birds in the Singer Tract were the last of those in the 1-6 range? How else would you explain their becoming accustomed to having Tanner observe them?"


No, not really (more likely in the 7-10 range)... natural selection works over long periods of time, and I'd guess that increased wariness of IBWOs was well underway for generations before the Singer Tract birds... BUT even "wariness" was an insufficient defense against humans in times of widespread hunting. Rather, in the early 1900s conservation movements came along that made hunting of most woodland and endangered birds illegal, and moreover in urbanized America, hunting decreased substantially anyway, with a smaller percentage of citizenry engaging in it -- with those pressures off, the wariness could now play a more important role, especially if enough birds remained to reproduce.
Tanner had the advantage of Kuhn as a unique guide, who knew the birds' routines well and who's non-threatening presence they were accustomed to. Much of Tanner's key work also centered on the nestsite he observed, and the birds there, no matter how wary, weren't likely to abandon an active nest, unless directly threatened. Thus, again, as often said, no matter how difficult getting a picture of a wild, foraging IBWO may be, this debate will be over in a flash if/when a nestsite is located. In other states of course, despite his skills and knowledge, Tanner never found IBWOs without a Kuhn-like figure to lead him.
 
Herbert Stoddard and Whitney Eastman made the argument about the seriousness of ivorybills being subjected to human predation over sixty years ago
 
Houston...all...we have not seen any increase in the number of IB reports and granted the effort has dropped off precipitously but it's still disappointing. The reproductive potential in a decade assuming 30 pairs of IB in 4 or 5 metapopulations is 600 birds. Superficially there seems to be some decent unoccupied home ranges completely available for dispersing young.

The Ib was a well established member of the picidae community and the niche is unoccupied. The overlap amongst large picidae was there but the IB had a competitive edge in certain situations or microhabitats within forests. So what has changed?

We all agree the bird is likely more wary to some stimuli and seems to prefer seclusion.However what happens if the genetic bottleneck has produced birds that now are so skittish that they fail to act like precolonial birds did to protect nests, to protect young, to remain on a good foraging area, to fight a predator attacking them on a trunk. In other words to survive the human predation they have become less fit in dozens of important ways not necessarily providing much advantage interspecifically except in avoiding people?

Throughout the literature to the present we see multiple examples of how IB populations rapidly were selected for wariness while concurrently they were learning or forced to forage well away from human activities and areas where there were roads, moving vehicles, etc. Today's Ibs may percieve or avoid a larger edge than it once did. IBs may in general avoid major forested edge areas even though there are applicable resources there for them.

They survived the bottleneck but they are no longer a proud, aggressive and respected member of the biota in the unforgiving forest interior.

We must take into consideration sink and source population dynamics...in precolonial times there were large fires unimaginable to us today that consumed half a state in days. This provided a tremendous concentrated food source for IB which have some evidence of existing in moving loose clusters. In several optimal years after fire input it's conceivable that a few states' IB populations could have doubled. The males at least dispersed, females less so,to other areas/states resulting in maximal population numbers over centuries.

This founder population phenomenon was important and maybe more important than we realize to population dynamics. Today we only have sinks or at best population stasis in a few areas.

By allowing the skeptics to force us into this unproductive picture chase when decent evidence of presence existed from AR and FL and the Pearl we fumbled. We needed to unite then and insist on actual intrusive research, habitat management and a plan to get a bird(s) in the hand.

Today's smaller, disjunct forests and todays timid IB may not be compatible.

We need to look at this on the ecological landscape scale not on the piece of bark scale. We then may need to imitate or manage the resources to meet a more sedentary and shy IB. It's a tough spot.

If there is no consensus by the publuc that we need more done with our tax dollars and sustantial land resources we could lose a species that is worth hundreds of millions in ecoutourism dollars just because we collectively didn't get our act together and instead insisted on getting one bad video or picture every 3 to 10 years.

If States lose the IB they lose tens of millions of dollars.

Pictures and videos of single birds has already been accomplished per the usfws, at least the AR rbc and small but smart portions of the public.

Our chance to save the critically endangered IB may have been lost when we let the usfws allow known keptics onto the recovery plan voting committee..that was the end. 95% of that plan was a literature compilation.

These voting skeptics had budgets to protect and the lost dollars are fungible....ten million dollars to the IB is $50,000 less for me to study early successional ant colonization in premontane forests of Ecuador.

We have lost the high ground in many ways.

Good luck. Ib searcher

 
Pertaining to where IBs forage in forests there is now about 60 minutes of summated film of an IB or putative IB from AR, FL and LA.

These minutes are dominated by a distant, poor quality video of 2 putative IBs in FL (Collins) for about 24 minutes (2 birds X 24 minutes =48 minutes of the range wide summation of the modern 60 mins of video). See links below.

The long Fl sequence shows birds moving from low areas (10 to 20 feet) to much higher areas. One or more birds knock and even seem to enter a cavity. I think this sequence is deserving of repeated views so one might be able to better anticipate how an IB may move from high to low perches in actual field conditions. I am not convinced this is only foraging behavior but rather lean towards this portraying what an IB does if it detects a human at a distance. It also may be form of displacement behavior.

The infamous AR video starts with a perched bird on a tree trunk ~ 18 feet above the water; it then drops down to ~ 6 feet (to the nearest cover, TO QUICKLY AVOID A PERCEIVED HUMAN THREAT) before it makes the 4 second fly away sequence at a high Hz wing beat (too high Hz for any of the tens of thousands of Pileated seen over the years).

Other FL video below is of a single bird IDed in the field as an IBWO that seems to be observing 2 humans for 5 minutes as the researchers move through its range. Its mainly moves from lower perches to higher perches; note that there is thick understory in places and the interaction between the bird and the humans is a noteworthy 4 + mins.

Throughout these 60 minutes no IB seems to come below 6 feet. There seems to be two dominant areas of activity, from 6 feet to 30 and then from 70 feet to the treetops, likely just a corollary to the typical midstory gap in many forests.

Admittingly the sequences show various types of behavior and can only give inferences on where IBs may predominately forage.

Some things that may be pertinent to understanding IBs:
In mid to late seral forests where there is a gap in branches or cover in the midstory but there is better cover against human eyes/guns in the understory or nearer concentrated trunks, an IB may move to either the understory level or upperstory branches depending on what cover is closer when a human is discovered. They may however chose a perpendicular lengthy flight directly away from the threat or its moving line.

IBs prefer to rapidly move through the shortest line or distance to close cover or distant cover; not surprising. Their flush distance can be as low as 100 feet even when there is minor motor noise involved. They may not equate that sound with human or natural predation.

The FL IB behavior of "trailing" potential predators is significant. I do not think its noted in the literature but it's not uncommon for animals and birds to observe, scold, mob or trail potential threats. This video may be of some muted, vestigial remnant from when IBs have loudly scolded or perched openly as a diversion to humans or other predators they felt where a threat to them, their mate, or a nest.

http://www.birds.cornell.edu/ivory/evidence/segments/segments/perched

http://www.fishcrow.com/choc19jan07.html

http://www.auburn.edu/academic/science_math/ivorybill/ibillvideo.html

Clip 3(305.3mb MOV) Clip 3 Deinterlaced(4.5mb PDF) Clip 3 Zoomed 300%(45.2mb MOV)
Clip 3 Zoomed 300%(2.3mb PDF) Clip 2(56.9mb MOV) Clip 2 Deinterlaced(5.5mb PDF)
Clip 2 Zoomed 175%(3.8mb PDF) Clip 1(98.5mb MOV) Clip 1 Part 1 Deinterlaced(5.0mb PDF)
Clip 1 Part 1 Zoomed 300%(3.0mb MOV) Clip 1 Part 3 Deinterlaced(5.4mb PDF)
Clip 1 Part 3 Zoomed 300%(2.2mb PDF) Full Video (Must use Real Player to view this video)

tks ibsearcher
 
Your earlier post on reasons for the apparent lack of a population rebound was illuminating. Thank you.

Now on the most recent post I must again ask your help in understanding something. Are you suggesting that 60 minutes of putative IBWO behavior while humans are nearby should be accepted as representative of normal IBWO behavior when humans are not present?
 
Houston, it specifically states he believes the majority of these .mov may be in response to a predator being near. How do you get turned around to your question?

J.
 
This comment has been removed by the author.
 
Well, he starts off saying "Pertaining to where IBs forage in forests there is now about 60 minutes of summated film" and later adds "...the sequences show various types of behavior and can only give inferences on where IBs may predominately forage". It sounds like he's suggesting that foraging heights may be inferred, though not proven, by how the purported IBWO react to the presence of humans. Foraging isn't done when there is a human threat, right? My questions was poorly worded, but I'm asking him to clarify. Is he suggesting that threat avoidance when humans are present is evidence of where IBWO normally forage when humans are not present? I think the answer is yes, he is, and I'd like him to elaborate with more than the two sentences I quoted above.
 
Houston, woodpeckers do many things when potetial predators are sighted at great distances.

There are certain clues in the long FL clip that these putative IBs are aware of the distant kayakers.

But if its an emergency I can get an eyewitnesse's opinion on that and more.

Regardless haven't you observed for extended time periods many singular woodpeckers that were concerned with your presence, potential nearby predator or an intraspecific competitor?

If observed for 5-30 minutes are you saying they perform only one category of behavior? Don't they do many disparate behaviors in 30 minutes while keeping an eye on you?

IBs did different things while people watched them from 100 feet and the IBs were at least slightly concerned; actions included knocking, foraging/scaling, preening and much more (see literature that includes specific IB behavior logs over many hours,days and different studies).

The great height, distance the birds in FL watch the kayakers from may have allowed them safety to perform several behaviors while keeping an eye on a distant potential "terrestrial" predator.

These FL birds moved around, climbed trees, knocked and ??? Or do you think they just sat in the trees and stared at the kayakers for 30 minutes?

Seems unlikely they would completly stop various actions just for a distant possible threat that was fairly sedentary; addtionally there was two sets of IB eyes and I believe setinels are used.

Regardless that video is of very low quality and only inferences can be made concerning some subjects. However gross movement patterns, some behavior and height data can be discussed as we just did in the last posts.

What rivers/forests have you explored and how many days? What are u finding?

tks ib searcher
 
Sure, IBWO may do many things when a human is just a hundred feet away. Can we agree, though, that they would not come down to forage within ten feet of the ground? So the fact that the putative IBWO don't forage at low levels during the videos in no way supports an argument that they rarely do so when humans are not around. It is not a logical inference or conclusion.
 
IBSEARCHER Wrote: "I have finally finally found the evidence that a significant survey data set by a few large, formal groups that produced mostly negative presence data was likely flawed. We just increased our hourly contribution to the IBs saga ten-to fifty fold by potentially eliminating several thousand hours of false-negative presence data or point survey data. We may have just put another 500,000 + acres plus back in play as not properly looked at."

That sounds encouraging. Tell us more.
 
Houston again.........What rivers/forests have you explored and how many days? What are u finding?

tks IBsearcher
 
And how many cam pics from less than 5 feet on the bole do you have?
tks
 
I'm finding that it is not all that unusual to see PIWO below ten feet or flush from what was a low position, if one moves quietly. I'm not putting trail cams on trees, but have a couple ready if the need arises. I've been to all the major river systems in Texas, but I'm not going to give details about how many hours in each.
 
I know that most, if not all, myself included, participating in this silly debate have seen, and are convinced that the Luneau video is an IB. Seems to me, that initially it was 5' or less from the ground, on the bole of a tree. No evidence that it was foraging, but it, without doubt was there. Ibscareawayer, are you now, in spite of what you have stated in the past, going to magically transform that bird into a PIWO?
 
"I believe sentinels are used." Where did you find this in the literature?
 
One last. While I question the tendency to conflate IB behavioral paradigms with PIWO, and even many Campephilus congeners, there are numerous YouTube videos of PIWOS foraging on/near the ground (Google it yourself) and I have found what is clearly PIWO work near the base of a tree dozens of times... This supports Houston contention...
 
One sighting of ivorybills on the ground that got almost zero attention, was by Geraldine Watson, a naturalist born and raised in east Texas, and her son David, as described in Watson's book "Reflections on the Neches":

" In my days as a guide to birdwatchers and nature lovers in the Big Thicket area, I had many experiences on this bayou (Pine Island Bayou). One of the most memorable was when David, who was about 12 years old at the time, and I put in at the Highway 105 bridge between Beaumont and Sour Lake and let dark catch us before getting out. We were delayed because we had actually seen a pair of ivory-billed woodpeckers with their family in the area where Little Pine Island Bayou joins Big Pine Island Bayou: at that time, very wild country but now extensively developed and drained. We had been seeing woodpeckers of all sorts all day and when we rounded a bend and David whispered hoarsely: "Mama! Ivorybills!" I looked up expecting to see more pileated woodpeckers and was so startled by what I did see, I dropped the paddle into the boat with a loud clatter. The birds had been picking up acorns on the bank under a grove of water oak trees but flew into the trees at our approach. They flew over the bayou and up Little Pine Island and out of sight."

This sighting is referenced in the Recovery Plan as:
Pine Island Bayou, Hardin County (G. Watson and D. Watson); December 1968


 
Prairie wolf the Luneau video has a woodpecker like bird perched on a tree in the lower midstory well off the ground initially. It has a white wing shield and was measured later as being of the right size for ivory-billed. As the canoe enters a curve the bird likely moved down to avoid detection but the bird did not anticipate a bend in the creek and the canoe approached its position. It then flys. It's all mentioned above by others.

Very surprised peolpe do not know that.

Good luck J.
 
I am trying to keep an open mind on all opinions and it's actually one of the better discusions when it stays on Ivorybills.

Not sure why one poster whose project has had the floor uninterupted for years must call it silly and act like he does in a public forum.

Ignoring the upthread discussion and interuprupting the flow of good discussion with constant back pedaling and with "I saw Pileateds on the ground" doesn't help the Ivorybill.

Everyone here who is going to make any differance in the field with Ivorybills knows that Pileated's are often on fallen logs, stumps and punky trunks, they eat ants, termites and insects.

What they are doing and where is they do it has little bearining on where we may see Ivorybills.

Please be respectful of others who enjoy a decent discussion.

GA



 
"...As the canoe enters a curve the bird likely moved down to avoid detection..."

How often do you see large birds come down to the level of a threat to avoid it? The idea doesn't match your earlier comments that IBWO seek elevation to avoid predators. More likely is that the bird moved down to forage and then, suddenly seeing a threat, flew off.

"Everyone here who is going to make any differance in the field with Ivorybills knows that Pileated's are often on fallen logs, stumps and punky trunks, they eat ants, termites and insects."

Right. We've read about PIWO on the ground in literature, seen videos, and witnessed it ourselves. And with IBWO, we've read about it in the historical literature and seen videos. Very similar behavior.

Just a few decades ago, Geraldine Watson witnessed a pair of IBWO feeding on the ground at along a bayou near Beaumont, not long after John Dennis saw an IBWO on a stump in Texas. Later, a boater saw IBWO on the ground along the shore of an east Texas lake. Did Texas IBWO not hear that they were supposed to stay away from the ground, or is the theory that hyper-wary IBWO spend all their time in the treetops more than a little overstated?

 
Houston said
>>>>How often do you see large birds come down to the level of a threat to avoid it? doesn't match your earlier comments that IBWO seek elevation to avoid predators. More likely is that the bird moved down to forage and then, suddenly seeing a threat, flew off. <<<<<

Houston stop purposely misleading people. I clearly stated that the IBs in the videos show that they HEAD TOWARDS THE NEAREST COVER, up or down as one would expect. Should we know something about your reading comprehension? Your ignorance that birds often move to the nearest cover is frighting.

And are you kidding with that Luneau foraging comment, get a grip. The bird had just arrived there ~ 2 seconds before after being flushed by a close, powered boat. Stop lying and misleading people because you can't prove the foraging point. Using the extensively discussed Luneau video and inserting the delusion of foraging; you're hilarious.

cont.
 
On IBWO on the ground: Cyberthrush started the foraging thread and CLEARLY said that IBs can occasionally visit the ground. I have been CLEARLY talking about the lower 5 feet of bole for two weeks. I have also given hypotheticals when I thought there was an increased chance of an IB foraging very low; so has Thrush.

Most of us are well aware of historical reports of IBs eating mast. This is not anywhere as risky as excavating on a low bole with the foragers head and eyes pointed and focused into a tree with an avian or terrestrial predator able to come in unseen at high speed when the IB only has insufficient milliseconds to escape, untouched.

Neither you or Frank have presented much evidence or a strong multi-premised argument let alone proof that IBs are disproportionately excavating on low boles. I have given certain circumstances when occasional foraging on low boles makes ecological sense.

You both are dismissive of pertinent predation pressures despite hundreds of papers, books and texts saying how important predation pressures are in shaping animal behavior. Frank at first vaguely quoted someone saying " birds go where the food is". Wow...why didn't we ujst listen to that. We can't make you or any searcher believe red is red if you refuse to.

In your mast example it was a family group with many eyes likely acting as sentinels for each other (that was one of my hypotheticals that Frank would have already forgotten if he hadn't thought it was wrong).

Frank just asked incredulously about sentinels and you provide an example immediately. Sometimes by accident Houston's helpful. In addition ground feeding on concentrated resources has good caloric return for the limited time an animal may be on the ground with sentinels. There is no bole to block the view. This all fits many foraging models.

Cyber said-----------The birds might still visit ground-level for brief water or food excursions, but not to spend extensive time scaling bark, at a level that leaves them highly vulnerable, when perched. A lot of searches may simply be focusing on forest levels too low for where IBWOs spend perhaps 80-90% of their time (and the higher reaches are barely accessible to humans). ---------

Frank didn't know that the most famous video/data on the modern IBWO started with the bird perched up at ~ 16 feet before it fled down to ~ 6 feet where it then started the flight sequence.

Houston thinks IBs see people in a moving motorized boat, fly down to the nearest cover and start foraging in 2 seconds and then immediately are scared into a rapid escape flight.

My goodness Houston you found the holy grail of methods.....move around in motor boat and wait for them to fly down to forage...then just click the camera.

Frank didn't know that multiple authors have stated that IBWOs prefer to nest in flooded in areas. This is partly caused by his dismissiveness of predation considerations.

It's all worse than I thought.

In the future I will set up a simple code for these people who have no goal but to mislead others at any cost.

good luck
 
Thanks Houston. Once again, you have asked percipient questions, the answers to which will be discovered if and only if the ivorybill persists, can be documented, and studied. Your ideas are grounded in simple common sense, and are based on credible reported observations (and I refuse to debate credibility or the perception thereof), usually the easiest approach to anything resembling fact. A breath of fresh air.

Let me be clear, the search for IBWO isn't - a. Silly (Though this argument with all these unprovable assertions, reams of mostly unrelated information to bolster the impression of legitimate research, name calling (guilty as charged your honor), and unanswered challenges, is indeed high comedy) - nor is it b. an attempt to attract attention. I'm just a guy who knows the hard places to get to, and can get there and back. I enjoy the quixotic nature of the search, and what I have learned and am learning and friendships made are priceless.

GA - my apologies. The "differance" that we have all (experts to novices - PhDs to dropouts) made thus far is pretty negligible in the grand scheme of things. I have made it a practice to not attract attention, preferring to avoid these ad nauseum discussions. I kind of resent what you seem to be implying - but that discussion, too, would be silly. I've gotten over worse.

J - to my recollection the Luneau footage shows the bird briefly on the trunk of the tree above the buttress... I will go back and look...

Enjoy!
Frank
 
Great Point = GREAT
Logical = LOGICAL
Purposely Misleading Comment = FOOL
Based on scientific principles unknown to this planet = ALIEN SCIENCE
Outright misquote or lie about anothers statement = DO NOT TRUST ANY FIELD DATA
Poor or complete lack of reading comprehension = A HOUSTON ...lol
Obfuscation = OBFUS
It was already answered upthread LOOKUPITSNOTONTHEBOLE

here lets see how it works.

houston says -----And with IBWO, we've read about it in the historical literature and seen videos. Very similar behavior.----- FOOL

Almost all modern searchers now believe the IB has changed in many ways from the historical literature

houston says =====John Dennis saw an IBWO on a stump FOOL

I believe JD claimed it was sunning and perhaps preening

and ===A HOUSTON (poor comprehension) since the discussion has been on lower boles he discuses stumps

Houston said _----
they were supposed to stay away from the ground, or is the theory that hyper-wary IBWO spend all their time in the treetops more than a little overstated?--------ALIEN SCIENCE, FOOL, A HOUSTON.

No one said they spend all there time in the treetops.
 
Thanks Houston. Once again, you have asked percipient questions, the answers to which will be discovered if and only if the ivorybill persists, can be documented, and studied. Your ideas are grounded in simple common sense, and are based on credible reported observations (and I refuse to debate credibility or the perception thereof), usually the easiest approach to anything resembling fact. A breath of fresh air.

Let me be clear, the search for IBWO isn't - a. Silly (Though this argument with all these unprovable assertions, reams of mostly unrelated information to bolster the impression of legitimate research, name calling (guilty as charged your honor), and unanswered challenges, is indeed high comedy) - nor is it b. an attempt to attract attention. I'm just a guy who knows the hard places to get to, and can get there and back. I enjoy the quixotic nature of the search, and what I have learned and am learning and friendships made are priceless.

GA - my apologies. The "differance" that we have all (experts to novices - PhDs to dropouts) made thus far is pretty negligible in the grand scheme of things. I have made it a practice to not attract attention, preferring to avoid these ad nauseum discussions. I kind of resent what you seem to be implying - but that discussion, too, would be silly. I've gotten over worse.

J - to my recollection the Luneau footage shows the bird briefly on the trunk of the tree above the buttress... I will go back and look...

Enjoy!
Frank
 
Wow! That was a photo finish. GA? Any comments?
 
CT... Please don't delete that. I'm sure there's something actionable there.
 
Thanks Houston. Once again, you have asked percipient questions, the answers to which will be discovered

ALIEN SCIENCE
 
This comment has been removed by the author.
 
Fred, I did not mean to offend or mislead. I'm sorry that you are so angry and bitter that you continually resort to name calling. I have enjoyed reading your opinions and theories, and really do find much of what you say interesting and enlightening. It's really unfortunate that you can't accept honest questions and observations, misguided as they may be, without offering insult after insult. I think I'm done here for now.
 

Houston said to Searcher: How often do you see large birds come down to the level of a threat to avoid it? The idea doesn't match your earlier comments that IBWO seek elevation to avoid predators. More likely is that the bird moved down to forage and then, suddenly seeing a threat, flew off.

But Searcher had said this Houston:

Some things that may be pertinent to understanding IBs:
In mid to late seral forests where there is a gap in branches or cover in the midstory but there is better cover against human eyes/guns in the understory or nearer concentrated trunks, an IB may move to either the understory level or upperstory branches depending on what cover is closer when a human is discovered. "

Houston we are trying to enjoy a good discussion without someone misquoting others to make points.

The Ivorybill is an important subject, you can do better I hope. Do not misquote me when I contribute.

And I am familiar with the Arkansas tape. To put it kindly that's a doozie of an interpretation you have (foraging next to the camera boat).

You actually pressed send! That will stay forever; there is no escape.

J.
 
Well stated CT.
 
Pretty sure I never intimated that the Luneau bird was foraging... I don't know what it was doing there...
 
Houston.....


“We can easily forgive a child who is afraid of the dark; the real tragedy of life is when men are afraid of the light.”

― Plato
 
Frank, you encouraged Houston's unusual ideas. Now look what happened!

Searcher
 
Gosh Houston really wants the Lord God Bird to be near him. He didn't want it high up in the forest at any cost. We all want the bird close but must resist becoming entrenched and outright misrepresenting what others say.

I find his goodbye disingenuous since it's bizarre, he immediately knew his comments are "misguided" but then calls them "honest" questions as he tried to evoke sympathy. Houston do not use good evidence to make stringy points and then try and insert yourself as a victim.

Using the solid Bayou de View video to make a point on his need for the species to be near his camera lenses
puts selfish desires ahead of science.

People are very tired of these things happening over and over in the search for answers.

Good luck all.

J.


 
Prairie wolf it's GA. On your comments above to me, it's obvious you have a low tolerance for others alleged silly topics but your silliness goes unrecognized by yourself.

Regardless there are some birds left well to the east of you and therefore safe from your social events and odd maculations.

Ga
 
I have gotten a few good emails on the recent discussion. The situation is complex; criticism is not delved out lightly and without some proposed solutions; it's realized that multiple posts are needed to be fair and impartial to all the moving parts.

Sacrosanct to priorities should be the IBWO and not disturbing the same birds over and over, year after 5 years, in the same home range AND OFTEN IN THE BREEDING SEASON. Far down the list after a decade of "research" is political correctness and coddling long continuing dubious constructs, ineffective or inefficient methods, regurgitating well known facts such as IB physiology or erecting memorials to exaggerated survey methods allegedly critical to long dead, personal IB heroes. These latter things are for the Ivory-billed Researchers Forum, lol.

We have suffered through various modern frauds (do I have to list them?) where IBs have been the main victim. The modern searchers are good people; however there doesn't have to be intentional fraud to sidetrack, damage or slow IB conservation or study down.

It must be realized by them that the the IB is a critically endangered species, but maybe not. We can't take anything for granted as far as assuming they know the obvious after recently reading some of their theories and reading Mark's comments as he circles for years from scaling to sign. We have wished him luck for 10 years and 5 years ago he publicly said to us -------I've got the feeding sign sussed out. . .-------------- Does he seriously think that JJ needed more than a few minutes of seemless field work to say highly likely, maybe, or no to the question of IB presence or absence in a forest patch? The direct field comments (see Hoose) from JJ and Tanner portray it as a rapid process done many times in a day (seemless). They quantify and age the scaling rapidly and either stay for a listen and look, or move on. You're are on a hot spot; so what is causing the great trouble or hesitance in moving on to completely new areas and finding more IBs if you have it worked out ?

Mark claimed he had it all fussed out right during one of us effectively eviscerating Crocker's IBWO skeptic movie 5 years ago. We looked on in amazement as C. interviewed Sibley who claimed in a few field days that IBWOs couldn't be in the Big Woods AR because there was no scaling on trees! He had just read Tanner in his van parked at the trial-head during this improv research. Of course the whole short movie and spontaneous field study had no details, empirical data or value (see below or cont.).

All believers, decent scientists and others unequivocally knew that Sibley's claim was bloviation. We showed Sibley no quarter; he hadn't quantified anything, there were no data sheets, no notes, no pictures.....neither were any possible that could have showed what he claimed on the forest landscape scale. it was all like his heuristic wing beat Hz for Imperial.......... 2.8.

cont. ibsearcher
 
Point is, we need to treat weaknesses in our data like we did theirs otherwise we become them. Skepticism of ones own work is the basis of even mediocre studies let alone significant studies. We greatly appreciate your work but we have been patient; ten years is plenty of time to clarify whether YOUR extraordinary claim that a new, range-wide IBWO survey tool was upon us (inferred at least 5 years ago). You tried to fulfill the claim by looking at pieces of bark and boles in only one part of one or two forests in a small part of one state. And even though the study area is obviously too small for your extraordinary abstract, the short-fall in design is compounded by the lack of layered ecological study scales.

Even on the lowest ecological scales of bark and single trees your data set or opinions are woefully incomplete since its obvious your team has observer bias towards lower boles. Your assumption that IBs forage "anywhere there is food" is neither proven nor is it the null hypothesis. Your missing the multiple strong data that IBs are both physiologically and behaviorally tuned to predators. A few were pointed out last week with no response: why do IBs and Imperials, which were even larger, rotate nervously on the horizontal plane, even when perched on less dangerous, high trunks? This is energy demanding.

This idea that Kuhn and Tanner found IBs by mainly or only following sign is misleading. When used right It was a gross way of telling a field worker that MAYBE IBs were recently or long ago in an area. In the end they could only locate and study IBs by hearing, or seeing them or relying on prior patch occupancy knowledge. The assertion that its closely applicable to contemporary modern forests is also misleading or at least nuanced. The belief that its an improvement over well designed, traditional point survey methods is based more on romanticism than empiricalism. The belief that it can reach maximal utility without looking at relative scaling quantity and concentration with control patches is a mistake.

It's a possible preliminary tool if applied rapidly in the arsenal of some researchers in some places. JJ searched forests that had decades of serial IBWO foraging sign with birds that may have been less skittish than today's birds; he knew for years where the birds frequented in a general way. He was also noted by perhaps RTP and others to have had superior ears.

Regardless you seem to be on a hot spot where you are pressing the pursuit; hopefully a grand stroke of luck is headed your way. On that line, I am wondering why you need to test the admitted mistakes by others via pressing birds; you are doing ADKs most or all visits when presence has been established for years. Your actions, sometimes during breeding season, are unnecessary if you have the scaling sign worked out after ten years and have established presence by prior sightings and multiple acoustical events. Your actions belie and contradict some of your own claims since ADKs are not contextually needed and are intrusive.

You should wonder why sightings seem to be dropping each year (excluding one observer). This one observer seems to be having the majority of all the recent sightings (but hopefully this is a misunderstanding) including one the best modern sightings ever.

Mark 5 years ago: I've got the feeding sign sussed out. . .

Comments by us on Sibley's claim:

Its not bad as a comedy. But unfortunately it wasn't intended as one. Oliver Stone's distortions and deletions of facts has 35 year olds to this day believing in fables about Dallas--- now its Brinkley. Garrison, Crocker.........what a crock. To those who study the history and ecology of the IB this movie provides some good insight into the logical errors and leaps of the skeptics. They are more like deniers, grasping at straws and sayings, than true skeptics. Not one of them has ever produced any field evidence of any substance except Jackson and his past findings supports IB existence.

 
Croker unwittingly infiltrated the banal world of the deniers. He knows not what he has done, so thanks are not in order, just amazement. Unfortunately this butchering of the story, perpetrated under the guise that this successful researcher or that one, wouldn't talk to him, influences layman and wise use types against IB conservation and all conservation.

Its very enlightening to see Sibley, Prum, Jackson, Nelson, et al. sharing their rationalizations and how they no doubt fed off each other into one of the biggest conservation and science blunders of all times. What did some famous skeptic call it .....group think? Isn't that easier to develop when you put together a set of people who all have idiosyncratic biases to create synchronized doubt. I mean come on....the stories on each of these skeptics is well known except evidently by Crocker. Sibley is the first major field guide author to leave the sp. out or guides and call it extinct in the US (Mid-1950s). This lack of caution, is antithetical to what all extinction proclamations deserve from a scientific and moral perspective but still came amazingly AFTER he had the benefit of the Cuban and Kulivan events. He then continues the mistake with the multiple errors in the Science Note, his failure to study wing beat Hz at all and then when he did he made rudimentary mistakes.

Top of Show acting award goes to Sibley performing amazing scientifically sound survey studies, from design to conclusion, in only eight days, beating God's creation endeavors by 2 days. God took Sunday off, evidently some have superior work ethics. He went to the White NWR for 8 days and walked in one direction for 1/2 the day and then turned around and came back later in the day in the opposite direction. During nights he read Tanner in his van and discovered that the dead Nuttall's Oaks he would see on his strolls should have IBWO work on them. He opines he didn't see any IB work so concluded hmm, ahhhh, maybe something's wrong with the whole rediscovery and especially the v. tape.

Now those data sheets I gotta see. On which night did he discover this methodology? Did he start his study after night 1, 2,...7? Making his ability to conclude that IBWOs seemed to be absent via complex corollary, even more fantastic in its efficient brevity and clairvoyance. Or is the word illogical, when one takes into account the thin, linear strip he examined. Was he looking for the bird or tree trunks? How many 2 year or less, post senescent, Nuttall's did he examine? Any pictures of these trees? When did he create the field guide key to even distinguishing IB tree sign from other Picidae when the amateurs are going in circles for 7 years on sign. (Although Auburn at least pretty successfully empiricalized the process).

cont.
 
Did he have a method to measure adherence? Any real data on all these unworked trees? I assume the other woodpeckers for some unexplained reason were also not doing what all Picidae do.......peck at rotting trees because they can't get at the decaying can this odd, science fiction film is stored in.

Amusing is Sibley's nice comments on Nelson. Let me get this right.....Nelson is a blessing to scientifically based conservation pursuits but hasn't been in the field and can't figure out the basic physical chemistry of CO2?

Prum is a classic--- damn what a habitual flip flopper. The proof is lacking--its great----not sure could be ducks-----its bad. And with his scoffing about who would expect the bird in AR, him and Crocker knowingly ignore the FL, SC and LA claims and evidence. Jackson----- not a word from Crocker or him on the blatant double standard from Cuba. No evidence there other than field notes--but in the US the videos, much audio, more notes than the whole '86 expedition times 20, isn't up to their mutable standards. Sun can't reflect off dark wings of select Cuban birds in short views, fooling those with feet in Cuba we suppose.

Their alleged great understanding and concern for ES fundings in 2006 is only believable if and when we hear that any of them officially testified, published, strongly lobbied, or donated significant time or monies to increase ES funding prior to 2006. ( Jackson may have done something hopefully). The Ivory-billed is a keystone species that is certainly as worthy of funding as any other species. One can convincingly argue that the IB, an umbrella species, is more effective in conserving large, entire biodiverse communities than many other ESs.. The problem with funding is mainly its inadequate level. Letting decision makers off the hook to increase levels by blaming the IB is a tactical error in many ways. The deniers made a Faustian deal easily portrayed when we see the Nelson/Sibley hand holding.

If any of Crocker's excessive editing was in error or he took someone out of context, to weave his fable ...........its possible.

Crocker is a busy editor with some good scenes but this is the most ill-informed and most intellectually one-sided and sophomoric piece of pseudoStone-like cellulose we will hopefully see. All Crocs usury of Nancy Tanner and years of splicing out of context statements is debunked by several minutes of summated IB evidence. All validated by scores of field note events, 3 peer reviewed papers, the USFWS and the AR BRC. Unidirectional editing doesn't change facts.

Collectively these individuals damaged conservation. 2006 ?

tks ib searcher
 
Some of the poor pseudo-science work by the early skeptics seemed planned by a college freshman student who heard the word logic for the first time.

They knew there were no recordings of ivory-billed knocks, no film of lengthy flight sequence and no firm data on flap rate. So they quickly took advantage of holes in our knowledge and the weight of their names.

They were well known to the bee-hive mentality of the amateur public.

Forward to cracks in the undergrad pool of logic and the imperial woodpecker tape and it showed who was swimming naked for several years.

As far as where Ivory-billeds are today, there are a few left but admittingly they do not seem to be doing well and are hard to find. Obviously.

Good day John or J.




 
My concern goes out to all those flooded in MS, LA and TX. The human suffering and property damage is terrible.

These late winter, early spring seasonal rainfalls and floods were just mentioned here a week ago. These seem to be records; I am wondering if these seemingly larger and more frequent flood events will be another threat to the IBs in few ways.

Certainly it affects, shapes and limits the invertebrate community up to the flood line in at least the first and second bottoms. Beetle larvae die from hypoxia. IBs in La are known to prefer foraging near the interface of these ecotones which is where sweet gums and oaks can dominate. Tanner also found them to be mainly foraging in higher reaches of the trees.

Searcher said upthread: Note that all or almost all the best ~20 sightings from Kulivan onwards have been in river bottoms that are seasonally flooded mainly in the late winter and early spring. There are dozens of sources on this preference (see Hill, Fangsheath, Tanner above for just a few).

Searcher (me) said "IBWOs prefer to nest high in trees in areas that are often seasonally flooded; this is some protection from terrestrial predators . High water can kill cerambycid larvae below the flood line and shape the biotic community of the lower bole in RIPARIAN CORRIDORS. Adult beetles and their eggs can also be killed if they are submerged."

Coyote, upthread had indefensible and semantical problems with my statements even though they are common ecological truths easily found in the literature.

He said " Interesting... Can you source that first sentence (IBs preferring to nest in flooded areas?) And in southern forests, about which, Freddie, you know very little, flooding is seldom "seasonal" (except in large river bottoms), instead is often short term and related to random heavy rainfall events, which can occur at any time of year."

And

PraireWolf/coyote completely missed the words "RIPARIAN CORRIDORS" in my original paragraph.

In many southern states the average rainfall on days it does rain, is greater in the first 6-7 months of the year than it is in days later in the year; surface water transpiration rates of mature forests are much greater in summer than spring drawing down flood waters much quicker then.

Also consider seasonal spring rains from numerous northerly states and even Canada can affect even ID (in dike) land in LA as the vadose zone perks up due to hydrostatic pressure from OD (outside dike) land.

Flood news 3-11-16

Widespread flooding in Louisiana and Mississippi has damaged thousands of homes and the risk of more flooding played out Sunday as rain-filled rivers rose over banks.

The Sabine River has risen to more than 29 feet at Deweyville, Texas, completely isolating the small Newton County town of about 1,200. Access to the town by vehicle is nearly impossible, save by boat or helicopter.

As of Sunday morning, water had crept into town by about 2 blocks, storm chaser Erik Fox told weather.com. According to Fox, the police station is expected to be entirely covered by tomorrow.

Mandatory evacuations have been ordered in Deweyville after a week of storms have pushed the nearby Sabine River beyond historic flood levels.

Upwards of 18 inches of rain fell in the Sabine River Basin from a weather system that lingered over the area for five days, and as of Sunday morning, the river was just shy of 29 feet.
 
"I have seen fallen tree trunks full of the borers that the Ivory-bill prefers, but never have I seen one of the birds feeding on such a trunk".

"Ivory-bills rarely come near the ground."

Quote from the well respected literature and researchers.

There are more quotes on the subjects discussed above.
 
IB Searcher, forgive me if you've already mentioned it, but I was wondering where your IBWO field searches have taken you.
 
Cc Hello. I have mentioned our studies over the years. I was lead investigator on five govt. Esa permitted studies and several other independent studies where the abstract was to test for Campephilus and Picidae attraction to ADKs. This abstract was mainly a preliminary or prerequisite protocol to determine if IBs move towards the stimuli and at what height for future possible netting placement/netting attempts.

The protocol was significantly different to CLO and data seems to support that our methods produced more positives especially when you consider that the studies were mainly in fall before the breeding phenology begins. This minimized disturbance to pairing, nest excavating, breeding.....

SC FL LA MS...17 counties parishes...approx 700 data points each with .25 sq mi calibrated acoustical footprint, approx 15 studies of 4 to 8 days mostly field camping. 280 square miles survey but not all unique acres however. Several points or studies produced brief sightings or acoustical IB response but attraction data is only suggestive.

Some IB responses were likely duplicate counts of same bird since we visited some spots year after year.

Tks searcher
 
Thanks for sharing. The subject of ADK's has long interested me, and others have approached me about incorporating ADK's into my (very unscientific) search in the Pascagoula Basin. What was considered the "cut-off" time for ADK's, in order to avoid the kinds of disturbances you mentioned? I had not considered this before, and would certainly be mindful of it if I ever learned how to do ADK's.
 
The general breeding phenology of IBs varies but likely begins in the last half of December with increasing calling/knocking and the a priori renewal of pair bonding behavior to hormonally synchronize the pair to the impending sequence of activities. The timing of egg laying may be influenced by the winter's total photoperiod (days of sunshine) but I don't necessarily lend any great weight to that causality offered by another, without more study. IBs will have a second clutch if the first is destroyed so breeding can go into May or even later.

IBs likely did not breed every year; the reasons are conjectural but could be related to comments I made on source and sink breeding events associated with pre-colonial fires. We do not want to add any more reasons for IBs to fail by doing poorly designed ADK studies; preparation is needed and sometimes permits. Certainly introducing a surrogate intraspecific stranger, intruder, competitor and/or a potential suitor into a sensitive field situation in the form of ADKs is nothing that should be done unless a detailed and valid abstract to assist the IB is established and accepted by the land owner/resource manager.

We have robust field data sheets (on green paper for camo!) with several categories for different sets; the abstract was mentioned already. We recorded position, habitat, temp., weather, wind speed, DBH, all birds heard/seen with the times after the ADKs,comments and more.

I have an ~ 100 page document that has had excellent success in getting permits in multi-jurisdictional situations to do ADKs for IBs, a critically endangered species. Unbeknowned to us and evidently the permit reviewers circa 2007, 08, 09, 10, our ADK protocol was much less intrusive than CLOs or others at the time. I believe and have informed CLO years ago and again this year that their 6 ADKs per minute method was much too aggressive for the modern IB and judging by their poor results likely produced false negatives for presence. All their ADK data can be argued to be invalid; all acres returned to the column of "IB status unknown". I have informed them of our more moderate method that had a solid response rate by IBs, that in some studies matched the published pair range size as far as finding one or two birds per 10 sq miles in perhaps the best road-less habitat in the SE US.

As mentioned the studies were done mainly in fall when IBs are thought to be less vocal but we still had solid results. This showed that non-breeding season IB studies can be successful while concurrently keeping disturbance to a minimum.

CLO rightfully suggested that these methods and results be published. I would like some internal prerequisites be met before publishing this study that covered many localities.

tks ibsearcher
 
A wealth of information there. Again, thank you for taking the time to share this very, very useful information.
 
Gorgeous photo of IBWO's temperate forest cousin, foraging at ground level. Enjoy!

https://www.flickr.com/photos/barbarico/23780333639/in/pool-campephilus
 
Some posters add nothing important to the thread other than drawing attention to how casual and obtuse they are to ecological questions concerning our last ivorybills.

And curiously (well, not really) at the same time advertising for their picture blogs.

The Magellanic Woodpecker's niche is of course more closely related to the Pileated Woodpecker's (often a downed, log feeder) than an IBs. Misleading cutsey, posts are easily noticed by us.

If a cautious and serious tone to ivorybill conservation doesn't come first in small discussions how can we hope to unite and demand that land managers do what's needed for ivorybill recovery?

Here's a hello to more future obfuscation.
 
This comment has been removed by the author.
 
For the time being I've turned off further blog comments...
 
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