Bird’s Eye View

 With a wingspan of up to over eight feet and eyesight over eight times stronger than that of a human, the Golden Eagle is one of the most feared hunters in the wild. They possess 20/5 vision, and they can spot an object from 20 feet with the same clarity a visually unimpaired human can... Continue Reading →

If you can’t beat them, out reach them

In Season 1, Episode 2 of Planet Earth II, Sir David Attenborough describes how one special hummingbird has gone through great lengths to avoid competition. In tropical jungles, nectar is first come first serve, so competition is furious among the hundreds of hummingbird species. However, one particular hummingbird species, the sword-billed hummingbird (Ensifera ensiferas) has... Continue Reading →

City Pigeons: The Fight to Survive

In David Attenborough’s documentary episode “Cities” in Season 1 of Planet Earth: II, a number of species are featured to illustrate how they have adapted to the rapid changes posed by urban cities. Urbanization has led to the destruction of natural habitats of many species due to increased human activity, pollution and noise, all of... Continue Reading →

Frigatebird, an Energy-Saving Opportunist

In Season 1, Episode 4 of the Hunt, Attenborough describes how Magnificent Frigatebirds, Fregata manificens, take the opportunity to snatch flyingfishes when these poor fishes glide over the sea to avoid predation by mahi-mahi, the dolphinfish. Interestingly, as seabirds, frigatebirds seldom touch the ocean, because their feathers are not waterproof [1]. However, they can travel... Continue Reading →

Fiery Wings in Sky

If you’re close enough, the gusty waves produced from the flapping of a vulture’s wings can be quite palpable. Take, for example, Griffon Vultures. They are one of the largest species of vultures, weighing up to eleven kilos and having a wing span of over two meters. It is no easy task for creatures of... Continue Reading →

Lyre Lyre Pants on Fire

In the midst of the forest, one may experience a cacophony of sounds. The songs from a myriad of bird species, the rumbling of a chainsaw, and the piercing cry of a car alarm from a nearby road are all noises permeating the thick brush in Episode 6 of Life of Birds, Season 1. What... Continue Reading →

Raising the Young of Others

Female goldeneye ducks regularly lay eggs in a woodpecker’s home and take their brood after hatching [2]. This unique behavior is described in Season 1, Episode 9 of The Life of Birds (The Problems of Parenthood). Goldeneye ducks belong to the family Anatidae, which comprises about 147 species in total [4]. They are the perfect... Continue Reading →

Shoebills, the Second Born Gets the Boot

The documentary Africa (Episode 2, Savannah) depicts a scene that is not easy for most people to watch. A Shoebill hatchling, born just three days earlier, continuously picks on its younger sibling. Moreover, the parents allow this to happen and only feed the older chick, thereby ensuring the demise of one of their own offspring.... Continue Reading →

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