Sunday, April 20, 2014

Theme: Birds

  • I began by anatomical investigations on a dead Mallard which I found washed up on the beach, lovingly stripping off each layer of muscle, boiling up and reassembling the skeleton. Then, everything was drawn; from several angles. There were several mishaps: like when I glued a small bone to my hand with Superglue and couldn’t get it off.Read more
  • Migration likely brings to mind the familiar sight of geese flying overhead in their iconic V formation, honking stridently as they fly toward their faraway goal. But the migration of many birds is a rarely observed phenomenon. Most passerine birds, a group that includes songbirds and groups taxonomically related to them, migrate at night. Read more
  • Toward the end of summer, many songbirds in temperate regions of the Northern Hemisphere migrate south to overwinter in more favorable climates. But some species stay put. One of the most common groups of resident songbirds is the chickadees and titmice of North America and the tits of Europe and Asia. Read more
  • Captain F. D. S. Fayrer's photographs and illustrations of birds common to the plains of India and the British Isles, from Birds of the Plains, by Douglas Dewar, first published in 1909.Read more
  • Even people with no interest in field guides know about them; they lie on friends' shelves and windowsills (the one near the bird feeder, usually), and people stand in the park, binoculars around their neck, thumbing frantically through them. Like millions of others, I knew and used field guides since I was a child, but a few years ago I turned my professional curiosity on them. Read more
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