It has the smallest (Bee Hummingbird) and largest (Ostrich) birds, some of the most beautiful (Birds of Paradise) and some quite ugly (Shoebill) and strange (Hoatzin). There are birds on all the continents as well as Arctic and Antarctic regions.
There are also a number of island endemics. In the south Pacific, there are entries for Hawaii (1), New Caledonia (2) , New Guinea (3), Sulawesi (1), Mindanao (1), and New Zealand (2). The Galapagos has 1 entry. Madagascar has 3. The Caribbean is well represented with Cuba (1), Hispaniola (2) and Montserrat (1).
There are about 240 families of birds, so obviously they are not all represented on this list. There are 3 each of Birds-of-Paradise, Gulls and Terns, Cotingas, and Tyrant Flycatchers. There are several unique birds that are sole members of their family. These are the Hoatzin, Kagu, Oilbird, Crab Plover, Ibisbill, Wallcreeper and Shoebill, For those of us in North America, not a single New World Warbler is on the list.
Each entry has a full page photograph and facing page article of what makes the bird rare, unusual or interesting to warrant its inclusion.
This is the second group of 10 birds. The first installment is here.
Number 100 is the Arctic Tern (Sterna paradisaea). This is a small (14") tern that breeds in the Arctic around the world and winters in the Antarctic along the pack ice. They are a long lived bird 20-30 years or more and in their travels from pole to pole and back each year, they may travel 3/4 million miles. Because they spend the summer in the Arctic and winter in the Antarctic, they have perpetual daylight except during the migration. Thus these birds have more daylight in their annual cycle than any other animal species. They migrate through the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. They don't appear in the Gulf of Mexico, so it is not a bird you will see in Texas. They are typical of tern plumage with a white body and a black cap on the head. The bill is described as 'blood red' and is the ID mark. This bird was photographed in Anchorage Alaska.
|Rock Ptarmigan - male molting|
Number 82 is the Tufted Puffin (Fratercula cirrhata). This is one of 3 puffin species and is a resident of the north Pacific Ocean and Bering Sea. It is black bodies with a white face, red bill and yellow tufts behind the eyes in breeding plumage. This bird was photographed in Alaska.
|Harlequin Duck - male|
Number 67 is the Bohemian Waxwing (Bombycilla garrulus). It is similar the common Cedar Waxwing that we see across North America. It breeds further north in the taiga forests of North America and Eurasia. It winters further south but they are very nomadic and don't always show up in the same place each year, thus it is hard to find.I did not see this bird in Alaska, despite looking on the tour. But I did find this bird in a flock wintering in Ely Minnesota by the Canadian border.
|Resplendent Quetzal - male|
Happy birding and photography,
photos copyright 2006 - 2017 David McDonald
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