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The Changing Seasons: Winter of the half-hardies

Dinsmore, S.J. and Fontaine, J.B. (2003) The Changing Seasons: Winter of the half-hardies. North American Birds, 57 (2). pp. 164-170.

Abstract

Winter – a fascinating season during which many birds (and birders) are pushed to their physiological, ecological, and geographical limits by cold temperatures, inclement weather, and short days. It is the season when bird diversity is at a low in most regions, and when many birders take a brief hiatus to prepare for the impending rush of spring migration. We usually enjoy a gradual cessation of birding a activities through winter, punctuated by an active Christmas Bird Count season and perhaps an annual outing on New Year’s Day. But winter is also the season for other birding activities: gull watching (or simply "gulling" as some of our larophile friends call it), searches for winter irruptives (if they make it far enough south), and offshore pelagic trips for alcids and other oceanic visitors, to name a few. As in previous essays here we, provide a synopsis of weather patterns and bird distribution for selected species in winter 2002-2003, followed by a discussion of topics we hope will be of interest to readers: the subjects of species variability and of birders' relationship to science.

Publication Type: Journal Article
Publisher: American Birding Association in alliance with the National Audubon Society
URI: http://researchrepository.murdoch.edu.au/id/eprint/15475
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