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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.

Web ivorybills.blogspot.com

"....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

Sunday, January 15, 2006


-- Faux Ivory-bill --

Mike McDowell has posted on his 'Birding and Digiscoping' blog a fake Ivory-bill photo just to demonstrate how easy it is to make such, exemplifying why I think the heavy emphasis on photographic or video (which with more difficulty can also be faked) is a bit misplaced. It still comes down to a matter of trust -- if you don't trust the individual turning in the photo/video it's worth MUCH LESS than a mere observational report from someone you DO trust. (I don't happen to think Mike's quickie example is all that convincing, but it indicates that, with a little additional time and effort, one could make it so.) I say all this only to make the point that, despite what is sometimes implied, photographic evidence will NOT necessarily end the debate; especially if it comes from anyone other than a trusted member of the Cornell team.

Looks like a leucistic Pileated to me!
I submitted a post last week, may have gotten lost. It's interesting and relevant that some 50 years after it's presumed extinction, a man snapped several photos of an Eskimo Curlew pair in 1962. (jeez maybe they were leucistic Whimbrels!)... but back in those days, photoshop didn't exist and the photos, to this day, are accepted evidence... and the only known photographic record of the bird. Soooo stranger things have happened!


Paul in New Paltz, NY
Another blog, which shall be nameless, showed a Geo map of the Cache River area. I did have to agree that Cache River is not the most promising spot. But then I started to scroll the map. It wasn't long before I found a swamp 5 miles wide just to the SW of the Cache River area.
I then went to maps.google.com and had a look around the Delta. I found some forest that was many miles wide and as long as the river.
You can scroll around on these maps.
and it helped satisfy me that vast spaces DO exist...though perhaps the Cache River area is not too vast.
Sure in some places, the river bottom forest is only 6-8 miles wide, but there are places where the riparian forest is 15 miles wide.
Agricultural and urban areas are also clearly shown. Check it out!


Choose the hybrid view until you know where you are, then switch to Satellite.

Paul - New Paltz, NY.
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