Author Archives: Amy

John James Audubon’s Birds of North America

An original copy of one of the world’s most valuable books, John James Audubon’s Birds of North America, is on display at the oldest museum of the Netherlands. The exhibit Vogels van Formaat runs at the Teylers Museum in Haarlem until 20 January 2008.

The proprietor of the museum at the time the book was published in the early 1800’s purchased one of the original Double Elephant Havell Editions of the book. Read Arthur’s account of our visit to the exhibit.

Posted in Aside, Books, Museum, Netherlands | Leave a comment

Dutch Town Wins City Bird Prize

The town of Meppel has won the first ‘Stadsvogelprijs’, or City Bird Prize. BirdLife (Vogelbescherming) in Holland has created the City Bird competition to stimulate bird life in city centers.

The town of Meppel has won the prize for the new Berggierslanden subdivision, a new neighborhood with space for both people and birds. Swallow nest holes have been built into new home roofs, bird perches have been hung though the neighborhood and the gardens have been planned with city birds in mind.

Other cities nominated for the prize this year were Capelle aan den IJssel, Hardenberg and Utrecht.

Source: Meppel wint eerste Stadsvogelprijs

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The National Schoolyard Birding Challenge

Students from across the United States are participating in The National Schoolyard Birding Challenge (NSBC). The NSBC is a monthly competition that introduces the interesting and educational hobby of birding to students.

Students learn how to identify birds by observing the various species found on school property. Besides encouraging students to become more familiar with the natural world, the competition also benefits participants who must practice patience, teamwork, and communication.

The NSBC is supported by the National Biodiversity Parks, a 501(c)(3) non-profit groups. Donations can be made via post or online at the Fledging Birders website.

Posted in North America | Leave a comment

Huge Flock Of Endangered Sociable Lapwing Discovered In Turkey

Earlier this month a flock of 3,000 Sociable Lapwings was discovered in Turkey. It was the largest flock of this endangered bird seen in over 100 years. The flock was discovered when BirdLIfe in Turkey followed a Lapwing that had been tagged in Kazakhstan.

Sociable Lapwing
Sociable Lapwing by Alastair Rae, Creative Commons on Flickr

Just a few years ago the total Sociable Lapwing population was thought to be as few as 400 individual birds. BirdLife partners in several different countries, including Syria, Kazakhstan and Turkey, have been working hard during the past few years to protect this species by preserving winter, summer and stopover sites for the migratory Sociable Lapwing.

Read more about the return of the Sociable Lapwing.

Posted in Asia, Endangered | Leave a comment

Plan To Increase Flevo- Wetland

The Dutch wildlife protection agency Het Flevolandschap is working on a scheme they are calling “Plan Roerdomp” (Plan Bittern) The plan has been devised to create more suitable habitat for such vulnerable species as the Great Bittern, Western Marsh Harrier, and Great Egret.

The existing reedbed in Flevoland is too dry for most marsh birds. By dredging along the reed-bed in the western part of the Lepelaarplassen, the area should become wetter and a better habitat for birds.

Preparations for the first dredgings are underway. Het Flevolandschap will try to limit disruptions to walking and cycle paths, and of course to the birds and animals that live in the area.

Source: Het Flevolandschap start met Plan Roerdomp

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Black-tailed Godwit Sets Migration Record

Scientists in New Zealand have reported a record-breaking migration of 11,500 kilometers by a Black-tailed Godwit. The data was collected after the bird was fitted with a transmitter.

The bird, called ‘E7’, flew from New Zealand to Alaska and back again. The same individual bird also traveled a journey of 10,000 km from New Zealand to China.

In May E7 flew to the breeding grounds of Alaska. The bird remained in North America for July and August before returning to New Zealand this month.

The study, by the Massey University in New Zealand, fitted 16 Godwits with transmitters in February.

Source: Grutto vestigt trekvogelrecord

Posted in Migration, Offbeat, Pacific | Leave a comment

Black Grouse Released In Gelderland

The Black Grouse used to be a common sighting in the Dutch Veluwe natural area, but the bird has virtually died out there. The bird is only seen now in the Sallandse Heuvelrug, but there is a plan to reintroduce the bird to Gelderland.

Thirty Black Grouse (25 females and 5 males) were released in Gelderland earlier this month. The bird has declined in the Netherlands due to loss of heathland habitat.

Source: Korhoenders vanaf vrijdag in vrijheid

Posted in Aside, Endangered, Netherlands | Leave a comment

Birds Welcome In Dutch Museum

This Sunday songbirds and their keepers are welcome in the Natuurhistorisch Museum in Rotterdam. Owners are advised that the birds must be kept in a cage.

A special songbird show will take place in the museum on Sunday. Film, audio presentations and live music will accompany the show, and the addition of live songbirds will add to the atmosphere.

The exhibit is based on a recent study by the University of Leiden that shows difference in the singing patterns between city birds and country birds. City birds have been noted to sing much more loudly than country birds, for example.

Visitors to the exhibit that bring along a pet bird will be granted free entrance.

Source: Met je zangvogel naar het museum

Posted in Netherlands, Offbeat | Leave a comment