A new study from scientists at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology examines public attitudes toward non-native bird species and whether people are willing to manage them to protect native cavity-nesting birds, such as Eastern Bluebirds and the American Kestrel. The findings are published in the Journal of Environmental Management.Read more
U.S. pollution regulations meant to protect humans from dirty air are also saving birds. So concludes a new continentwide study published today in The Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Study authors found that improved air quality under a federal program to reduce ozone pollution may have averted the loss of 1.5 billion birds during the past 40 years.Read more
Before the journey, many birds molt their bright feathers, replacing them with a more subdued palette. Watching this molt led scientists to wonder how feather color changes relate to the migrations many birds undertake twice each year.Read more
Surviving on a warming planet can be a matter of timing—but simply shifting lifecycle stages to match the tempo of climate change has hidden dangers for some animals, according to new research from the Max Planck Institute of Animal Behaviour and Cornell University.Read more
How do different bird species respond to extreme weather events that occur for different amounts of time, ranging from weekly events like heat waves to seasonal events like drought? And how do traits unique to different species — for example, how far they migrate or how commonly they occur — predict their vulnerability to extreme weather?Read more
A half-century of controversy over two popular bird species may have finally come to an end. In one corner: the Bullock’s Oriole, found in the western half of North America. In the other corner: the Baltimore Oriole, breeding in the eastern half. Where their ranges meet in the Great Plains, the two mix freely and produce apparently healthy hybrid offspring. But according to scientists from the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, hybridization is a dead end and both parent species will remain separate.Read more
A new study from the Cornell Lab of Ornithology highlights specific features of urban green spaces that support the greatest diversity of bird species. The findings were published today in the journal Landscape and Urban Planning.
The study focuses specifically on parks in New York City. It uses observations submitted to the eBird citizen-science database from 2002 through 2019 to estimate the variety of species found on an annual and seasonal basis.
Bottom line: the more green space available, the greater the diversity of birds. Models show that Increasing the area of green space by 50% would result in an 11.5% increase in annual and an 8.2% increase in seasonal species diversity.
With the emphasis on staying at home, more and more people are discovering the birds in their backyards—and they want to know the names of those birds. The free Merlin Bird ID app from the Cornell Lab of Ornithology was designed to answer the simple question, “What’s that bird?Read more
The eBird program at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology just released more than 500 animated maps spanning the entire Western Hemisphere. The maps show in fine detail where hundreds of species of migratory birds travel and how their numbers vary with habitat, geography, and time of year.Read more
Millions of people from around the world can now witness a rare sight in real time: a Northern Royal Albatross pair nesting and raising their chick. The live views originate from a coastal albatross colony in Otago, on South Island, New Zealand, and are made possible by a new partnership between the country’s Department of Conservation (DOC) and the Cornell Lab of Ornithology.Read more
Calling all shutterbug bird lovers: The BirdSpotter Photo Contest is back—always a popular feature of the Cornell Lab of Ornithology’s Project FeederWatch. The contest runs through March 12, with many great prizes available for biweekly winners and final Grand Prize winners. The contest is sponsored by Wild Birds Unlimited.Read more
Secrets hidden in more than 300,000 index cards with hand-written information about nesting birds are gradually being revealed. The Cornell Lab of Ornithology is partnering with Zooniverse, an online people-powered research tool, to digitize this valuable collection and create the largest database of nesting bird information in the U.S. This new effort is called “Nest Quest Go!”Read more