a usual feeding birds

Pearl Kite (Gampsonyx swainsonii)

…a very small species of elanid kite (Elaninae) which breeds from Panama, Colombia and Venezuela south to Bolivia and northern Argentina, with an isolated population occurring in Nicaragua as well. Its currently expanding its range and was proved to breed in Trinidad 1970, and is now becoming more common along the Pacific slope. Like other small kites, pearl likes feed mainly on lizards, birds, and insects which are usually caught on the ground. 


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Image: Dave Curtis

Crowley and Az aren’t super cuddly and lovey dovey. It’s more like a mutual agreement that they love each other, and a date is usually just going feed birds or some shit while having polite banter
—  Headcanon, well more like canon, submitted by anon
Avoiding Insects In The Zombie Apocalypse

In the midst of the zombie invasion, you might imagine parasites and biting insects such as fleas, mosquitoes and ticks will be the least of your worries. Think about it though; if a flea can spread diseases and illnesses such as the bubonic plague, myxomatosis or endemic typhus, what makes you so sure they couldn’t pass on a zombie virus or infection? Do you really want to risk fighting off zombie hordes only to be infected by an insect bite?

Mosquitoes: They are small flying insects that feed on mammals, birds and some species even feed on reptiles. Some can also feed on plant juices and/or nectar. There are about 2,500 species of mosquitoes worldwide and about 180 in the United States. It is only the female mosquitoes that bite because they need the proteins that are found within blood for proper egg development. Mosquitoes usually become infected from feeding on infected birds.

One thing we can be thankful for is that mosquitoes do not feed on dead animals or people, which suggests that zombies would not be part of their diet. According to Discover Magazine, even the fact that the undead are up and moving about doesn’t seem to change their status in the eyes of the mosquito:

“Mosquitoes use various cues to find food, but above all they are olfactory creatures. Breath and body vapors draw them to their animal hosts, as well as body temperature.”

Therefore, it stands to reason that a cold, rotting zombie would look nothing like a living, breathing human to a mosquito. But the real concern is the possibility that a newly infected person – still alive and kicking – may be able to spread the infection before they even shows any signs of being sick. If that were the case, and if the zombie incubation period is as long as days or weeks, then entire populations could be infected before anyone even knows there’s a problem.

One strategy to prevent mosquito bites is avoidance. But even if one were to remain indoors throughout the mosquito season, they might still encounter mosquitoes. Besides, it’s quite unlikely that a person will be able to stay indoors when there’s an zombie apocalypse happening. So your best bet is to use repellents, which are the first line of defense against mosquito bites.

Keep in mind that in order to avoid mosquitoes you need to know a bit about them. 

  • Weeds, tall grass and shrubbery provide an outdoor home for adult mosquitoes. They also can enter houses, apartments and buildings through unscreened windows and doors. Many mosquitoes will breed in any container that holds water, such as flowerpots, wading pools or discarded tires. So avoiding those areas or removing any potential areas for mosquitoes to use as a breeding ground will reduce your risk of being bitten.
  • Some mosquitoes are active between dusk and dawn, when the air is calm. However, others will feed at any time of day. Mosquitoes prefer a warm, moist environment. They are active from early summer until late fall in the east coast. In southern states that have a warm year-round climate, mosquitoes that can transmit diseases are active year round. 
  • Dark, vivid or contrasting clothing can be more visually stimulating to mosquitoes and therefore more attractive. Wearing more muted colors may help in reducing mosquitoes picking you out of a crowd.
  • The long-range attractant for female mosquitoes is carbon dioxide. As we (or other animals) breathe the carbon dioxide is picked up by wind currents, which the mosquito can detect. It will then follow the trail of CO2 until it gets close to its victim, at which point other indicators will be used to bite the person or animal. You give off more carbon dioxide when you are hot or have been exercising. A burning candle or other fire is another source of carbon dioxide that can attract them to you (or can be used to lure them away from you).
  • After mosquitoes have used carbon dioxide to get close to a bloodmeal, other indicators are used to actually pick out a victim. These include lactic acid (you release more lactic acid when you have been exercising or after eating certain foods such as salty foods, and high-potassium foods), body heat, natural skin oils, body scent (anything floral or fruity fragrances, like perfumes, hair products, and scented sunscreens, can attract mosquitoes. Also watch for the subtle floral fragrance from fabric softeners and dryer sheets) and more. This is why some people are bothered by mosquitoes more than others. 

Combining the knowledge of how to avoid mosquitoes with a repellent can keep you protected. Also, many conventional mosquito repellents contain the active ingredients DEET or picaridin. But there are more natural mosquito repellents available that may also work well. After all, repellents do have expiration dates and you may need to rely on natural means to repel them in a zombie apocalypse.

A mosquito repellent doesn’t actually kill mosquitoes. Repellents work by making people less attractive to mosquitoes, so they’re less likely to bite you.

  • Oil of lemon eucalyptus (OLE). This is a natural, plant-based oil. It works as well at preventing mosquito bites as products that contain lower concentrations (6.65%) of DEET.

PMD is a version of oil of lemon eucalyptus that is produced in a lab. Repellents containing OLE or PMD may provide up to two hours of protection.

If you decide to try OLE, make sure you buy the insect repellent version and not “pure” oil of lemon eucalyptus (essential oil). They aren’t the same. The safety and effectiveness of the essential oil as an insect repellent is not clear. Also, OLE should not be used in children under age 3.

  • 2-undecanone. This is derived from the tomato plant. It may offer 4.5 hours of protection from mosquitoes. It can be found in some insect repellents.
  • Catnip oil. This insect repellent is derived from the nepeta cataria plant. It may offer mosquito protection for seven hours, according to the EPA.

Many other natural ingredients are currently being studied as mosquito repellent. These include Fennel, Thyme, Clove Oil, Celery Extract and Neem Oil. However, more studies are needed to verify their safety and efficacy.

Natural repellents tend to be volatile plant oils. Natural does not automatically imply ‘safe’. Many people are sensitive to plant oils. Some natural insect repellents are actually toxic. Therefore, although natural repellents provide an alternative to synthetic chemicals, please remember to follow the manufacturer’s instructions when using these products.

  • Citronella Oil
  • Cinnamon Oil
  • Castor Oil
  • Rosemary Oil
  • Lemongrass Oil
  • Cedar Oil
  • Peppermint Oil
  • Geranium Oil
  • Possibly Oils from Verbena, Pennyroyal, Lavender, Pine, Cajeput, Basil, Allspice, Soybean, and Garlic

In the end, all bugs should be considered potentially dangerous. Even the cutest little butterfly that lands on your finger. You don’t know where it’s been or what diseases it’s carrying.

White Hat hummed softly as he sat on the park bench. He usually came out at this time to feed the birds or read a book. Today it was the book. He turned his page happily as he relaxed in the fresh air, not realizing his brother had set up for someone to meet him.



Pygmy Falcon (Polihierax semitorquatus)

Also known as the African Pygmy Falcon, P. semitorquatus is a small species of falcon, that occurs in eastern and southern Africa. The population in eastern Africa (P. s. castanotus) occurs from Sudan to Somalia south to Uganda and Tanzania. The population in southern Africa (P. s. semitorquatus) occurs from Angola to South Africa.

True to its common name P. semitorquatus is very small at only 19-20 cm long, making it the smallest raptor in Africa. Pygmy falcons typically inhabit dry bush habitats and will feed on insects, small mammals, birds, and reptiles. Pygmy falcons will usually in the nests of weavers, and even though they feed on bird will rarely go after their weaver neighbors.


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Images: Steve Garvie and Bob

kr-studios  asked:

Hi. So I've only recently looked up what Innistrad's moon looks like, and what a heron looks like. Could you just mention for your followers that they really should too, just in case they haven't? I mean, there are cryptoliths everywhere.

So basic Innistrad backstory:

Herons are sacred animals in the Church of Avacyn. Sigarda, the Host of Herons, even has a heron-head weapon that she uses to kill monsters. This is all because Avacyn gets her power from the moon, which has craters that Innistrad’s people think looks like a hero. @artofryanyee​ did a great job showing this lunalogical feature on Paraselene:

Oooh. Purdy.

In case you still can’t see it, here it is outlined in red:

Cool cool. Looks just like a heron. If you don’t know what a heron is, prepare for nightmare fuel.

Basic science lesson: all birds are dinosaurs. They evolved from a clade that includes raptors and other small, swift predators. Raptors are scary. They’re quick, covered in sharp things, and some species get quite large. Evolution wasn’t finished with these monsters, however, and gave them even more devastating armaments.

Herons are basically flying raptors with sword-faces on striking snake necks. They’re large water birds that usually feed on fish, frogs, turtles, ducks, rats, squirrels, rabbits…basically anything small enough to fit down their expandable throats. Witness the face of horror:

They look elegant and regal, but they are heartless killers. When nesting, they’ll being back butchered bits of fish to feed their insatiable spawn. They’ll yap into the night, shrill and bone-rattling. Gitrog Toad? Ha!


That scene in Jurassic Park III with the pterosaurs on the bridge in the fog? Yeah, that’s basically what herons are like. Except herons are real. And they do hang out in the water. In the morning. In the fog. Waiting. Ready to consume.

If there’s a heron in the moon, that may not be a good thing…

tartsplace  asked:

Fakiru for the ship meme!!

notp / not really / meh / I could / sometimes / maker, yes / my otp babbies / i will love them to my grave / crying and sobbing over a duck and a boy

  • Who is the most affectionate? Ahiru! She is incredibly affectionate both as a duck and a human and flusters Fakir regularly. Fakir’s affection is more muted and saved for non-public situations. He likes holding her hand.
  • Big spoon/Little spoon? Fakir is the big spoon and loves to wrap around her protectively!
  • Most common argument? They argue pretty regularly over a lot of things, but I feel like the most common would be Ahiru’s recklessness in various situations. And on the flip-side, Fakir’s stubbornness and inability to bend his views/compromise easily.
  • Favorite non-sexual activity? Dancing! They never get tired of doing a pas de deux and practice together regularly. They also like snuggling up together with a book, which Fakir will often read to her–including his own stories. Another thing they enjoy is taking walks out in nature.
  • Who is most likely to carry the other? Fakir carries Ahiru with ease and likes to do so. Ahiru tries once to carry Fakir but can’t even lift him slightly, much to her chagrin.
  • Nicknames? Fakir continues to fondly refer to her as “moron” and “idiot”, but otherwise uses her name in a very affectionate manner. Ahiru will call him a butt or a jerk when she is annoyed, but generally sticks to his full name.
  • Who worries the most? Fakir—whether it’s about Ahiru or the story, his powers, any unprecedented change gets him in an uptight mood.
  • Who tops? Fakir comfortably tops and they both like it that way.
  • Who initiates kisses? Ahiru likes to steal pecks to fluster Fakir, but he likes to take her breath away with the long and deep ones. :)
  • Who wakes up first? They are both early risers out of habit. Ahiru likes to wake up early to feed the birds, though Fakir is usually awake a little while before her and takes care of preparations like breakfast.
  • Who says I love you first? They have a ridiculous mutual crush on each other for the longest time and everyone at the Academy KNOWS they like each other, but they are both awkward doofs who have trouble expressing their feelings. Fakir has crushed on her longer, even before she started to see him that way, and he ends up being the first to confess in a very unromantic blurt during one of their arguments.