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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

Thursday, February 11, 2010


-- A Week-Or-Less --


The "Nature" piece yesterday reports that Cornell will be releasing its analysis of Dan Rainsong's photos in a week-or-less. I hope they'll fairly fully disclose what they know, but not confident of that. Still a bit surprised there was never any significant public word from Stephen Dinsmore, Jerome Jackson, Van Remsen, or others on the matter. Even a preliminary statement (subject to future change/update) from someone "official," would've been preferable to this lengthy silence that has permitted the story to trickle through chat rooms, social networking sites, and other places where it may get taken more seriously than the birding blogs/sites that have been cynical. But then public communications has never been a strong suit of the Ivory-bill "recovery" program, so why expect a change now! The question is, will officials come out of this whole affair looking professional and diligent, or looking like greater fools than they already appeared in the eyes of some observers? Perhaps we'll know in a week-or-less.
Meantime, if Mr. Rainsong wants to convince folks of his claims and have a shot at reward, he should simply return to the Sabine and VIDEOtape the bird(s) in action, and quit fooling around with near meaningless still camera shots. What part of "DUHHHH!" doesn't he understand?
I get that Rainsong has no credibility, but after Sheridan does that even matter? I don't think demanding only video for credible evidence is a good idea. Whether or not photos are faked depends on the circumstances of the photo, including bird posture, location, motion blur, and format in which the photo is captured. The trade-off between a little bit of clear evidence and alot of fuzzy evidence isn't necessarily a good one.
If it were as simple as videotaping you'd think he would have done it. What are we missing? Sounds like he's offered to lead people to see the bird but for some reason they aren't biting (although him having "terms" like the camoflauge requirement may be part of the scam).

Hard not to think at this point that maybe the "experts" are staying silent because, although they don't necessarily believe him and his photos, they aren't willing to call him a kook or a scammer.
As they a Picture is worth a thousand words, so I withhold judgement or at least specualtion until the pictures are released.

At the very least it's been entertaining during long snowy winter...so when is it going to be spring.

Personally I believe the IBWO still flies, and are inability to get a clear shot or video has everything to do with our understanding (or lack of)where the IBWO habitat is found and the nature of the way it is existence. There are plenty of very reputable birders who hav esen the bird and are convinced it still exists. I think we are jumping to the conclusion that because its numbers are thin, it is in the last twilight before extinction. I believe otherwise, that in fact its kind are increasing but perhaps not at the rate that most would like or believe should be...the IBWO however goes by its own ways oblivious to our concerns.
If the pictures were clear and convincing they would have been shown to the public immediately. If they have to be "analyzed" they are the usual blurry, unconvincing, fake crap that always surfaces in the quest for UFOS, Loch Ness Monsters, Bigfoot, and Ivory Billed Woodpeckers.

In the end, all the people who claim that they've seen or photographed an IBWO are going to look like fools and/or con artists, and the people who have fallen for the so-called "evidence" (phony garbage) will look even more foolish.

This whole situation is simply a scam, to con people and corporations out of money, to screw the taxpayers, and to falsely and selfishly elevate the stature/reputations of certain people.

It amazes me that so many people have been conned so easily by the money grubbing, glory seeking a-holes who are claiming to be IBWO experts who have allegedy seen an IBWO in person.

John Fitzpatrick and a lot of others should be fired, and all the money wasted should be reimbursed.
Rainsong had (what he perceived as) legal reasons NOT to make the pics public immediately, though I don't think they'll ever be made public. As far as I'm concerned the Rainsong claims are dead (not that they were ever alive).
Re: "the whole situation" it ain't over yet, and we'll just have to agree to disagree about it.
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