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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

Saturday, July 05, 2008


-- Nothing Better To Do --


Got nuthin' better to do so I'll just list my current obligatory baker's dozen list of states in order of most-to-least likely to harbor any Ivory-bills at this point:

1. Florida
2. Louisiana
3. Mississippi
4. Arkansas
5. Tennessee
6. Alabama
7. Illinois
8. Georgia
9. South Carolina
10. North Carolina
11. Kentucky
12. Missouri
13. Texas

I'd settle for Ivory-bills being found in just half of these ;-)) ...but, seriously,... awhile back, Bill Pulliam noted to me that he had called attention to Alabama's Mobile Delta region, recently mentioned favorably in Cornell's summary report, over two years ago on his blog when he surveyed (via computer) the Southeast for possible IBWO habitat:


It's been a long time since any credible reports of Ivory-bills emanated from this area (although a few unconfirmed reports have come from other parts of Alabama), and Tanner reported the delta region as totally cut over when he reviewed it in the 30's, but The Nature Conservancy is actively trying to preserve much of it today. The area falls nicely between the Florida Panhandle and the Pascagoula region of Mississippi if one cares to think in terms of a Gulf corridor for the species (which can stretch on to Louisiana's Pearl, and of course eastward to Florida's Apalachicola/Chipola).

....and here, classic comedy interlude for all those who have kids in summer camp this year... or... ever:


Tennessee is surprisingly high up in your list. Any particular reason?
And whatever happened to the Texas of John Dennis?

Hi Salar; just killin' time with this list ;-) After the top 3 states I could make an argument for a lot of different arrangements of the remaining ones. No very substantive reason for placing Tenn. high; just certain hunches and logical inferences made in trying to account for what has transpired both the last few years and the 60 years prior (all of which may mean nothing).
Re: Texas --- I've always felt Texas and S.C. were the only two states that really did get enough attention over the last 60 years to discount the likelihood of IBWO being there, and they don't fit as well on a 'corridor' along which offspring could travel and disperse repeatedly over decades. Having said that, they do hold some of the largest tracts of forest that the species just might hide out in for 60 years --- indeed, many agree that the Congaree in S.C. is the single best piece of bottomland habitat remaining in the U.S. for Ivory-bills (of course this assumes that the habitat requirements for IBWO not only were understood 60 years ago, but remain the same today, for a generation of birds far removed from those ancestors). I would really put South and North Carolina down with Texas on the list, but in deference to others' opinions (and the signs/sounds found in S.C.) I ranked them higher.
Anyway, just a fun list, not to be taken too seriously (...unless of course a year from now it turns out to be accurate! ;-))
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