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BirdNote

Science Podcasts

Escape the daily grind and immerse yourself in the natural world. Rich in imagery, sound, and information, BirdNote inspires you to notice the world around you. Join us for daily two-minute stories about birds, the environment, and more.

Escape the daily grind and immerse yourself in the natural world. Rich in imagery, sound, and information, BirdNote inspires you to notice the world around you. Join us for daily two-minute stories about birds, the environment, and more.

Location:

Tacoma, WA

Description:

Escape the daily grind and immerse yourself in the natural world. Rich in imagery, sound, and information, BirdNote inspires you to notice the world around you. Join us for daily two-minute stories about birds, the environment, and more.

Language:

English

Contact:

BirdNote PO Box 99456 Seattle, WA 98139 2064959640


Episodes

Wandering Albatross Molt

4/12/2021
Most birds molt and regrow their flight or wing feathers—one at a time along each wing—to stay in prime condition for flying. But for a Wandering Albatross, with a whopping 10- to 12-foot wingspan, that’s a big job! It takes the large albatrosses a full year to molt, and they have to put off

Duration:00:01:42

The Thieving Magpie?

4/11/2021
Rossini’s 1815 opera, The Thieving Magpie, tells of a household maid who nearly goes to the gallows for stealing silver from her employers. At the last instant, it’s revealed that the thief was actually a magpie. The opera was so popular in its day that it’s believed to have helped cement the

Duration:00:01:48

What's Inside a Woodpecker's Nest Hole?

4/10/2021
Many woodpeckers chisel out deep cavities in tree trunks in order to lay their eggs and raise their brood. The cavities hollowed out by the birds vary in size, depending on the species of woodpecker. The chamber of a tiny Downy Woodpecker descends about a foot from the opening, while the Pileated

Duration:00:01:39

Tricolored Blackbirds Face the Future

4/9/2021
Tricolored Blackbirds nest primarily in California, but smaller groups breed from the state of Washington to Mexico’s Baja California. They look a lot like Red-winged Blackbirds, except Tricolored males have dark red epaulets and white bars on their wings instead of scarlet epaulets and yellow bars

Duration:00:01:48

A Tool-Using Nuthatch

4/8/2021
The nuthatch’s beak is all business. Long, slender, sharp: it can pluck a tiny spider from a crevice in the bark or carve a nest hole right through the outer hide of a tree. And the Brown-headed Nuthatch is even known to use tools! Picking up a flake of pine bark in its beak, the bird uses it as a

Duration:00:01:36

Tanagers - Coffee Birds

4/7/2021
This Scarlet Tanager (R), its cousin the Western Tanager (L), and your latte have a connection. Much of the birds' prime wintering habitat has been turned into coffee plantations. When shade-giving trees are cut down to grow coffee in direct sunlight, the tanagers' winter habitat is also removed

Duration:00:01:45

Kinglets in Winter

4/6/2021
The Golden-crowned Kinglet weighs six grams, about the same as two pennies, yet winters as far north as Alaska and Nova Scotia. The birds move through the forest in small flocks and feed constantly, taking in enough tiny caterpillars to maintain their internal furnace at 110°F. And their insulation

Duration:00:01:48

The Color of Birds' Eyes

4/5/2021
Peer into the world of birds, and eyes of many different colors peer back. While eye color isn’t tied to one group of birds or another, a common pattern is a change in eye color as immature birds grow to adulthood. Bald Eagles, Ring-billed Gulls, and ducks such as goldeneyes and scaup have brown

Duration:00:01:45

High Island, Texas

4/4/2021
Each spring, millions of songbirds migrate north from the New World tropics to nest in North America. It takes 15 hours on average to cross the roughly 500 miles of the Gulf of Mexico. If wind or rain slows the crossing, the birds are worn out and famished when they reach land. What will they find

Duration:00:01:48

Rainwater Basin

4/3/2021
For 20,000 years, spring rains and melting snow have filled the playas of the Rainwater Basin of south-central Nebraska. As winter ends, ten million waterfowl rest and feed here before continuing north. The seasonal wetlands form a funnel for birds heading from the Gulf Coast and points south to

Duration:00:01:48

Wendy S. Walters - Hollywood Finches

4/2/2021
When writer Wendy S. Walters lived in LA in the early 2000s, she wrote a collection of poems about the city called The Birds of Los Angeles. For one of her poems, she wanted to examine the idea of the Hollywood romance “and the ways in which people think that they're going to be walking into a movie

Duration:00:01:48

How Birds Produce Sound

4/1/2021
Nearly all birds produce sound through an organ unique to birds, the syrinx. In many songbirds, the syrinx is not much bigger than a raindrop. Extremely efficient, it uses nearly all the air that passes through it. By contrast, a human creates sound using only 2% of the air exhaled through the

Duration:00:01:48

Singer's Brain Changes with the Seasons

3/31/2021
In higher animals, the brain is like a Lamborghini — amazing engineering, but expensive to run. In a human, the brain uses about 10 times more energy than other organs. A bird's system is exquisitely attuned to this expense. Several species, including Black-capped Chickadees, have adapted in a

Duration:00:01:41

Providing Water for Birds

3/30/2021
From chickadees to Cooper’s Hawks, most birds love a good bath. Some birds get the fluids they need from their food, but many birds need a drink at least twice a day. Water is essential for birds, and supplying clean water for them to drink and bathe in is a great way to help maintain native bird

Duration:00:01:48

How Brown Pelicans Dive

3/29/2021
Brown Pelicans fly just above the surface of the water. They circle high, then diving headfirst, plunge under water to catch fish. But doesn't that hurt? Several adaptations protect pelicans as they dive. First, they have air sacs beneath the skin on their breasts, which act as cushions. Watch a

Duration:00:01:46

Homing Pigeons

3/28/2021
Pigeon fanciers from around the world race specially bred homing pigeons over distances up to 600 miles. These stalwart and intelligent birds course the skies at speeds greater than 60 miles an hour. In 2005, a homing pigeon flying home to a loft in Norfolk, Virginia earned the record for that year

Duration:00:01:38

Watching Birds' Behavior

3/27/2021
To distinguish one bird from a similar one, watch how the bird moves. Does it flick its wings? Bob up and down? Flip its tail? The White-breasted Nuthatch (right) works its way down the trunk of a tree, while the Brown Creeper works its way up. A field guide usually mentions these behaviors, and

Duration:00:01:48

The Power of Albatross Partnerships

3/26/2021
Waved Albatrosses produce such slow-growing, needy offspring that females lay only a single egg every two years. And both parents need to share the load until youngsters can hunt on their own. Albatrosses tend to pair for life, and reunited pairs go through an elaborate, synchronized ritual of

Duration:00:01:45

Cheery American Robin

3/25/2021
What was the first bird you noticed as a child? Perhaps you heard the cheery song of the American Robin coming from the top of a nearby tree. Or maybe you saw a robin running and pausing on the lawn, cocking its head before extracting a fat, juicy worm from the ground. The robin is often the first

Duration:00:01:48

Spark Bird: Ryan Mandelbaum and the Great Blue Heron

3/24/2021
As a kid, science writer Ryan Mandelbaum avoided birds, thinking they were gross and kind of scary. But doing a video project in journalism school, Ryan had to search all over to get footage of a Great Blue Heron. When Ryan found one in its nest, they were shocked at how majestic and beautiful the

Duration:00:01:49