Audubon hiring someone to help save the Salton Sea

Audubon is looking to hire someone to help save the Salton Sea. It’s a great twofer – you get to help the birds, and if you succeed you also get to help save Colorado River manage as a whole, as the two are integrally related. If we fail to get the Salton Sea right, everything …

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Urban water, urban birds

When I’m in Phoenix, I always try to squeeze out some time to go birding at the Gilbert Water Ranch, a constructed wetland where practical water management has been turned into a lovely urban amenity. A fascinating new project by Arizona State University graduate student Riley Burnette (pdf) attempts to quantify the role that the …

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Sorting out the Salton Sea mess

I joke that I kept trying to leave the Salton Sea out of my book, because it’s such a hairy problem that in threatened to derail me in so many ways. Of course I failed, because the Sea is a critical piece of solving the distributional problems of scarce Colorado River water. Agricultural reductions in …

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Stuff I wrote elsewhere about deceptive bird sex

The best part of doing this story was standing by the Rio Grande at dusk with Chris Witt, watching the sandhill cranes fly in to roost. The birds were great, but the really extraordinary part was watching Chris watch them – eyes flitting, counting, listening and hearing. As they flew by, they announced their presence …

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One more hummingbird picture

Sorry, can’t resist posting one more hummingbird picture. The rufous, on the left, have just finally arrived at our house. They’re usually earlier in the summer, and they’re very aggressive, driving away the black-chins who have been here since late spring. Moments after this picture was snapped, the rufous drove the black-chin away:

Stuff I wrote elsewhere – the Cooper’s hawks of Albuquerque

From this morning’s newspaper, a column about a day with a research team studying the Cooper’s hawks that are making an increasingly comfortable living around my city: Cooper’s hawks are primarily woodland birds, and we have built an expansive urban forest across the Northeast Heights. The urban neighborhoods on the east side of the river …

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