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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

Wednesday, February 02, 2011


-- Miscellany --


1) First, just an oddball article I recently ran across (don't remember seeing before... but then my memory ain't what it used to be) here:


This is just the abstract (I don't have access to full paper), but it reports on a "a new feather mite species" found in "the wing plumage of the ivory-billed woodpecker" --- it was apparently found on some museum specimens. Interestingly, it's from 2004, before the excitement out of Arkansas erupted. Maybe someone can elaborate more on this --- I mean, I'm not clear if the mite has supposedly been living on museum skins for decades unnoticed, or is a more recent inhabitant, and does it have any special significance for the ecology of the Ivory-bill?

2) Outliers: The Ivory-bill's original range, prior to 1900 included the entire American Southeast. Since Tanner's day the prevalence of claims and major searches have tended to focus on parts of a handful of states: South Carolina, Texas, Louisiana, Florida, and more recently Arkansas. Outlying states with but slender areas in the original distribution have received far less (though some) attention: Oklahoma, Tennessee, Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky (by 1900, the species was assumed gone from all these states).
3) A bit ago I casually posted about an interesting-looking novel entitled "Quick Fall of Light," wherein Passenger Pigeons play a central role, and since then received a nice note from the author. The book looks like an engaging read, and there is a homepage for it here:

There is also a nice 'trailer' for the novel on YouTube here:

4) And just to end on a light-hearted note you can re-visit this oldie-but-goodie contribution (from back when the current IBWO story began) from Tom Toles, perhaps the best political cartoonist ever in the history of the Milky Way Galaxy:

Regarding outlier states:

When somebody posted that they had Ivory-bill pictures for sale on eBay purported to be from Oklahoma, I did a Google Earth search and it seemed like the habitat there has been completely annihilated.

Eastern Tennessee has actually had a number of Double Knock encounters chronicled by Bill Pulliam, so it's not really the periphery anymore.
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