Blogs & Videos: Sciences

Things seen in the Bird Division #11: 'Til death do us part

Red-tailed Hawk (Buteo jamaicensis). Photo © Jeff Skrentny. Sibling birds-of-prey often play-fight with their talons. It's practice for hunting, fighting, and passing prey to a mate. But the Red-tailed Hawks in the photos below are adults. They probably got their talons locked together in a territorial battle. Apparently they were unable to unlock them, causing both birds to perish. Maybe they should have played more as youngsters. "To the victor go the spoils," the saying goes. Unless there is no victor. 

A Monarch’s View of the City

The iconic monarch butterfly and other pollinators are in trouble.  Monarch butterfly habitat— including milkweed host plants and nectar food sources—has declined drastically throughout most of the United States. Population levels have also exhibited a long-term downward trend, suggesting that loss of habitat is a major factor in monarch declines. Fortunately we can reverse this decline! By adding the plants monarchs need to survive, primarily native milkweed and other native flowers, to home gardens, schools, offices, and farms we can bring back the monarch.

Painting the Diorama

Last year, The Brain Scoop kicked off Project Hyena Diorama, an Indiegogo campaign aimed at raising the funds necessary to build a brand new permanent habitat diorama at The Field Museum that would house a quartet of striped hyenas taxidermied by Carl Akeley in 1896. In six weeks we raised 91% of the funds thanks to Brain Scoop and museum fans from all over the world, and so began the long process of research and construction. The diorama will be officially open to the public on January 27th, 2016! 

Upcoming public events! January-March 2016

I have five public speaking engagements coming up in the next few months, all of them different. It would be great to see you there! -------------------------------------------------
January 19 (Tuesday): Lake Cook Audubon Society (free)
7:00pm, Heller Nature Center, 2821 Ridge Rd, Highland Park "Tales from the Bird Crypt: Stories from the Field Museum Bird Collection"

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