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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






Friday, June 01, 2007

 

-- "Prime Season" --

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With summer's full splendor of foliage, heat, bugs, and snakes, fast approaching, most official Ivory-bill searches for this season have concluded. Mike Collins however, says "prime season" for searching has just begun as he continues his efforts in the Pearl River region (LA.). I suspect by this Mike is referring to the fact that nesting IBWOs would've likely fledged by now and be moving around in family groups, calling to one another, and foraging often and widely for foodstuff (although he can speak for himself if he means something else).

The nesting period unfortunately is likely when IBWOs are hardest to stumble upon (most birds are), and without a knowing guide, like Tanner had, to lead them to a nest, today's searchers have been out-a-luck for photos. Pre-nesting, when pair-bonds are forming and territories established should also be a good time for searchers, and only the sheer scarcity of individual birds likely accounts for the rarity of sightings in those months.

Mike would likely abruptly re-write the approach to Ivory-bill searching if in fact he documented the birds during the humid months ahead.
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This won't be for very many of you, but in honor of Mike being a mathematician, a couple of things:

If your interest runs to prime numbers, instead of prime search seasons, here's a website of interest with many links:

http://primes.utm.edu/


.... and now, a simple riddle (nothing to do with prime numbers):

"Three spiders named Mr. Eight, Mr. Nine, and Mr. Ten are crawling along a Louisiana swamp. One spider has 8 legs; one (mutant) spider has 9 legs; and one (mutant) spider has 10 legs. All of them are usually quite happy and get along amicably. Today however the heat is testing their patience.
"I think it is interesting," says Mr. Ten, "that none of us have the same number of legs that our names would suggest."
"Who the Hell cares?" replies the spider with 9 legs.

How many legs does Mr. Nine have?
[ the answer can be determined from the little information given, and there is only ONE correct answer? --- it's actually quite simple, but interesting how many folks have difficulty with it].

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Comments:
Now that the IBWO is extinct its ALWAYS a bad time for searchers
 
and, as Mel Brooks might say, it's spriiingtime for IBWO atheists
 
I found amusing the following remark at another blog:

"Cyberthrush...your musings frequently mention that...only believers will be welcome at the grand celebration of hard evidence."

Rather than exclusivity, I think that most of us interpret your remarks as simply pointing out the
keen embarrassment that many of the more vocal skeptics will feel upon learning that their arrogance, taunting, mockery, name-calling, and character assassinations were premature and misguided.
 
re: above

frankly, I suspect at different times I've meant slightly different things depending on my mood at the moment :-)

but I can say I would be upset if once IBWOs are documented a bunch of prior skeptics rush down just so they can tick the bird off their lifelist, especially if they believe that simply by observing it they get to include it --- it should minimally require photo documentation to be included on any lifelist, and my preference would be that it NOT BE PERMITTED on any official lifelists for a 10-15 year period while any recovery program is being established; we need not be encouraging 'listers' to run in search of this species, and hey, I'm a skeptic of lifelists anyway, their accuracy and honesty being unprovable.
 
"most of us interpret your remarks as simply pointing out the
keen embarrassment that many of the more vocal skeptics will feel upon learning that their arrogance, taunting, mockery, name-calling, and character assassinations were premature and misguided."

If the IBWO were genuinely rediscovered we would still continue to mock all of the bogus prior "rediscovery" claims from elsewhere, especially copycat claims like those from Florida.

Until it is rediscovered the burden of proof is entirely on you and we won't let you forget it!
 
one reason the 'burden of proof' is left to believers is because there are so many outlying reports that skeptics have been unable to prove false. They get to rely purely on speculation and conjecture for their case, while we need (according to them) a photograph.
 
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