Birds & Words #3

Helmeted hornbills, hummingbirds, hefty ancient birds, and more

1. Why birds matter

A beautiful piece about why we should care about the birds around us.

2. The bird that is more endangered than elephants

The helmeted hornbill’s name spells its doom: The hornbill is hunted for its red helmet, which is smuggled into China. About 50 to 100 grams of it can fetch US$ 350 on the black market.

3. Eggs of ancient birds couldn’t take the weight of their incubating parents

Fossils suggest that primitive birds of the dinosaur era were likely too heavy to incubate without fracturing their eggs, and that incubation may have evolved in modern birds.

4. The hummingbird that chirps like an insect

The songs of this hummingbird species are so high-pitched they probably can’t be heard by other birds.

5. Pesticide use linked to farmland bird decline in France

Two studies spanning two decades register catastrophic declines in bird numbers. All this thanks to a crash in insect population, which itself could be due to pesticide overuse.

6. Fossil of 127-million-year-old baby bird unveiled

The newly hatched bird was smaller than your pinkie and weighed only 10 grams.

7. How a colony of 1.5 million penguins was found

Hint: Their poop gave them away.

8. Miniature birds

Check out these bird figurines hand-sculpted by artist Katie Doka.

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