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Tag: Birds

Study considers how climate change, shifting winds will impact migratory birds

Study considers how climate change, shifting winds will impact migratory birds

Science
Dec. 11 (UPI) -- New research suggests migratory birds in North America will be more likely to encounter headwinds as they fly southward each fall. However, changing wind patterns will make their springtime return less strenuous. Scientists at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology used radar observations collected at 143 weather stations to measure the altitude, density and direction of birds migrating during spring and fall. The most up-to-date climate models allowed researchers to determine how global warming and its affect on wind patterns will impact birds on the move. "We combined these data to estimate how wind assistance is expected to change during this century under global climate change," Frank La Sorte, a Cornell Lab of Ornithology scientist, said in a news release. "This matters for ...
Near-complete fossil reveals evolution of advanced flight among early birds

Near-complete fossil reveals evolution of advanced flight among early birds

Science
Nov. 13 (UPI) -- The most complete skeleton of an enantiornithine bird has offered scientists new insights into the appearance and behavior of the unique group. Analysis of the 75-million-year-old suggests enantiornithines evolved advanced flying capabilities similar to those of modern birds. The fossil -- described Tuesday in the journal PeerJ -- is an example of convergent evolution among early groups of birds. Enantiornithines were quite successful during the Cretaceous period, thriving among other bird groups and dinosaurs between 145 and 66 million years ago. The remains of members of the group have been recovered from every continent except Antarctica. "Enantiornithines originate well past the divergence with other theropod dinosaurs, and are more closely related to living birds," J...
Birds learn another 'language' by eavesdropping on neighbors

Birds learn another 'language' by eavesdropping on neighbors

Technology
For birds, understanding neighborhood gossip about an approaching hawk or brown snake can mean the difference between life or death. Wild critters are known to listen to each other for clues about lurking predators, effectively eavesdropping on other species' chatter. Birds, for example, can learn to flee when neighbors cluck "hawk!" — or, more precisely, emit a distress call. The fairy wren, a small Australian songbird, is not born knowing the "languages" of other birds. But it can master the meaning of a few key "words," as scientists explain in a paper published Thursday in the journal Current Biology. "We knew before that some animals can translate the meanings of other species' 'foreign languages,' but we did not know how that 'language learning' came about," said Andrew Radfo...
Feed the birds, but be aware of risks, say wildlife experts

Feed the birds, but be aware of risks, say wildlife experts

Science
Scientists are warning of the risks of wild birds spreading diseases when they gather at feeders in gardens.Experts led by Zoological Society of London say people should continue to feed birds, especially in winter, but should be aware of the risks.If birds look sick, food should be withdrawn temporarily, they say.The review of 25 years' worth of data identified emerging threats to garden birds. Finches, doves and pigeons are vulnerable to a parasite infection. Meanwhile, a form of bird pox is becoming more common, causing warty-like lumps on the bodies of great tits and other birds.Other disease threats, such as salmonella, appear to be declining."Our study shows how three of the most common diseases that affect British garden birds have changed both dramatically and unpredictably over th...
Angry Birds maker Rovio closes London studio

Angry Birds maker Rovio closes London studio

Technology
The company behind the hit mobile game Angry Birds has closed its London studio, after warning its profits were likely to fall.Rovio's head of games, Wilhelm Taht, also resigned on Friday, leaving chief executive Kati Levoranta in charge.The Finnish games company has warned that its brand licensing revenues could decline 40% this year.It has blamed tough competition and higher marketing costs for the poor outlook.Rovio's London studio was opened in 2017 and the company went public in September with a valuation of £786m.But on 22 February, the Finnish games maker issued a profit warning that caused its shares to drop by 50%.Announcing the closure of its London studio, Rovio said it wanted to concentrate on its studios in Finland and Sweden. The company had employed seven games developers i