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From: Archibald Webber
Subject: swollen
Date: Mon, 16 Oct 2006 22:59:30 -0400
User-agent: Thunderbird (Windows/20060909)

Harlequins are unique in other ways, too.
On one of these islands, Mauritius, these sailors were the first Europeans to lay eyes on the odd, flightless bird known as the Dodo. Herons nest in colonies, constructing their stick nests in adjoining trees or cramming several nests into one tree. Put your winter garden to work as a haven for birds.
Male Raggiana Birds of Paradise perform elaborate displays to attract females, sometimes even hanging upside-down with their wings pointing upward.
The harsh call of a silvery-white seabird rips the air. One crow is just a crow. Without flapping, it traces a leisurely, rising circle. As the winter sun sinks over the Coulee Lakes, hundreds of Gray-crowned Rosy-Finches suddenly appear, an undulating cloud that swarms into the upper levels of the basalt cliffs.
Learning to forage takes practice.
The tern whirls, folds its wings, and plunges into the water, diving for small fish that swim just below the surface.
But its song belies a rather bloodthirsty feeding habit.
Put your winter garden to work as a haven for birds. Male Northern Shovelers have regained their deep emerald head feathers and rich brown flanks. Although many other vertebrates avoid ants because of their stings or noxious chemical deterrents, the Northern Flicker is known to have ingested over five thousand ants in one sitting.
Chickadees and nuthatches swirl in small chattering flocks in the first light, to drink dew from the cups of leaves.
Only a few are harmful. What is the connection between the blood-curdling roar of a Tyrannosaurus rex and the gentle song of a robin?
They forage mostly during low tide, moving slowly and deliberately through the rocks in search of food. The swallows that make mud nests in spring and catch flying insects all summer are now far south in Mexico, and Central and South America. A clean feeder is a life-and-death matter to some birds.
Winter brings wondrous birds.
Unrivalled among these is the majestic Gyrfalcon, a regal visitor from the Arctic where it nests.
The Wild Turkey, from which the domestic variety has been bred, is native to North America.
This male Willow Ptarmigan from the shrubby willow tundra seems like he might be doing his best to make others laugh.
Driving the freeway or a narrow country road, you may glance up to a light pole where a large hawk sits in plain view. Twenty-five years ago, there were twice as many Lesser and Greater Scaup in North America as there are today.
Learning to forage takes practice.
As December days shorten, birds spend the long, cold nights in a protected place, sheltered from rain and safe from nighttime predators. The smallest woodpecker in the United States, it turns up everywhere there are a few trees, except in the dry deserts of the Southwest and in Hawaii.

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