migratory species

A Japanese paradise flycatcher feeding its baby. This migratory species is suspected to be in moderately rapid decline as a result of habitat degradation and loss on its wintering grounds.

eggson-bren  asked:

Have you seen the video where the woodpecker hitches a ride on a man's car in Chicago?! So cute!! I couldn't figure out where to submit it to you but I thought you'd like it. The bird's behavior is also quite strange to me.

I have seen that video! But unfortunately, it’s not so cute– this video depicts a yellow-bellied sapsucker (Sphyrapicus varius), one of the few migratory species of woodpeckers in the world.

Like many migratory birds, sapsuckers breed in forests and rely on them for food to fuel their migration. And also like many other migrants, large cities create a “light trap” that can confuse them on their migration. Hungry and seeking food, this exhausted animal descended to a large city where it was unequipped to move around and perch: woodpeckers don’t have anisodactyl toes like most other birds, and are best suited to propping themselves up on a nice tree trunk.

From the sapsucker’s behavior in this video, it is clear that that the bird is either exhausted, or injured, or both. In the wild, sapsuckers can be more confiding than other woodpeckers– but not to the point where they’ll fly up to a city bus and rest there in front of dozens of commuters. It is also incredibly rare to see a woodpecker merely hanging like this; sapsuckers are especially active foragers, systematically checking their sap wells for sweet snacks or insects.

So, yes: I’ve seen the video, and I have a hypothesis I’m fairy confident explains the bird’s behavior. But it’s not a happy story: just like millions of other migratory birds that pass across the Untied States twice a year, this yellow-bellied sapsucker probably died unnoticed on a street or sidewalk.

(obligatory @why-animals-do-the-thing tag, since this is in their wheelhouse)


Cuba is considered the crossroads of the Caribbean, and the designation is especially true when it comes to migratory birds. Many species use the archipelago’s varied habitats—wetlands, forests, mountains, and even human-dominated areas—as a place to stop, eat, and rest on their long annual journeys between North and South Americas.

“Cuba has long loomed large in the consciousness of bird conservationists,” says ornithologist Leo Douglas, president of BirdsCaribbean, a group dedicated to protecting avian wildlife throughout the region. “The whole of the archipelago is important to migratory birds.” Above are just a few of the many bird species that call Cuba their home away from home.

Read more on the blog.


Saiga is a type of antelope. They are known for their huge, inflatable, and humped nose which help them to filter out airborne dust during the dry summer migrations, and filter out cold air before it reaches their lungs during winter. They are a migratory species, migrating in the summer and winter and can run up to 80 km per hour in a short time.

Local people kill saiga because of its meat and horns. Horns are used in traditional Chinese medicine. Saiga is listed as critically endangered species and were once in the millions but today only less than 50,000 left in the wild.


natgeo Video by @christian_foto The state of Veracruz is a region with one of the largest quantity of migratory birds in Mexico. There are more than 200 species of birds who travel great distances across the country. There are various migratory routes, including the migratory passage in the center of Veracruz, which sees millions of birds of prey pass through each year.
In this area, a natural funnel has been created to maintain the specific passageway of these birds of prey. On one hand, the majority of migratory bird species need high temperatures and favorable winds in order to use the least amount of their energy during the migration. The mountainous structures of the volcanic system in Mexico cut its coastal plain in half. Migratory birds are not used to flying over these mountainous regions because the winds and thermal currents are not consistently favorable, thus obligating them to continue towards the strait of the coastal plain, which is the only side they can migrate in a concentrated mass. 

Obudu Mountain Resort, Nigeria.

- Situated in the highlands of Cross River State Obudu Mountain Resort has has a temperate temperature and is considered a natural wonder and the best man-made wonder in Nigeria. There is a cable car which lifts guests to the top and a helipad for access by air. There is a 11km winded road that leads up to the hilltop from the base, it has several country side, mountain areas and enchanting scenery. Features of the resort include: a water park where tourists can experience the thrill of state-of-the art water slides and Jacuzzi. Becheve Nature Resort, with over 250 different species of migratory birds. Visitors can stroll through the 60km canopy walkway built in the form of a ladder and tree house, for breathtaking views. The cable car runs from the entrance of the resort at the bottom of the mountain, up to the ranch resort at the summit.

Along the Mississippi River Flyway in Iowa, Port Louisa National Wildlife Refuge provides important habitat for migratory birds. Floodplains and forests are used by many wildlife species including migratory songbirds, waterfowl, hawks and eagles, deer, small mammals, reptiles and amphibians. After a recent snowstorm, it’s also a stunning winter sight. Photo by Jessica Bolser, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

Pokémon in our Biomes: pt. 19 Open Oceans

“I’ve recently decided to make a series of posts with hypothetical thinking and analyzing of what Pokémon species could potentially be found in the world’s biomes. Not at all relative to the games, I will be focusing primarily of the elements, design, and relativity to real life flora and fauna of Pokémon to depict where different species would roam on our big blue marble.”

This will be my 19th Pokémon in our Biomes post, and this one will focus on the Open Ocean. Generally when we talk about open oceans we throw around the term pelagic zone. Much like the abyssal zone, the pelagic zone has its own specific characteristics that make it different than other oceanic zones. The difference of the pelagic zone compared to other zones is that it’s pretty much just water. No coral, no plant life, the pelagic zone encompasses everything from the surface of the water all the way down to just above the ocean floor, where the benthic and demersal zones lie respectively. 

The sheer vastness and openness of the oceans allow for some of the fastest, biggest, most migratory aquatic species. Because there isn’t much to offer in regards to nutrients and prey, pretty much all of the food chain in the pelagic zone starts with the bear essential: sunlight

Let’s get started!

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I have given up on understanding the garden this year
  • Me: huh, I guess those kale seeds were a dud then
  • Kale: Surprise Motherfucker!
  • Me: what are you doing in the lawn??
  • Me: kale is not a migratory species, your going back to the veggie garden
  • Kale: BUT-
  • Me: would you LIKE to meet the lawnmower?
  • Kale: good point
  • Me: zuccini should not have purple flowers
  • Zuccini: it's not me!
  • Me: isn't crocus a spring flower?
  • Me: it's SEPTEMBER
  • Crocus: I DO WHAT I WANT
  • Me: all the flowers are coming up nicely
  • Me: wait you're a tomato
  • Tomatillo: EXCUSE ME I'm a TOMATILLO
  • Me: I haven't planted a tomatillo in YEARS, where did you come from?
  • Tomatillo: the fuck if I know
  • Me: ...alright

Basking shark (Cetorhinus maximus)

The basking shark is the second largest living fish, after the whale shark, and one of three plankton-eating sharks besides the whale shark and megamouth shark. It is a cosmopolitan migratory species, found in all the world’s temperate oceans. It is a slow-moving filter feeder; its common name derives from its habit of feeding at the surface, appearing to be basking in the warmer water there. It has anatomical adaptations for filter feeding, such as a greatly enlarged mouth and highly developed gill rakers. Its snout is conical and the gill slits extend around the top and bottom of its head. The gill rakers, dark and bristle-like, are used to catch plankton as water filters through the mouth and over the gills. The basking shark is usually greyish-brown, with mottled skin. The caudal (tail) fin has a strong lateral keel and a crescent shape. The teeth of the basking shark are very small and numerous, and often number one hundred per row. The teeth have a single conical cusp, are curved backwards, and are the same on both the upper and lower jaws. Adults typically reach 6–8 m in length. Basking sharks are believed to overwinter in deep waters. They may be found in either small schools or alone. Small schools in the Bay of Fundy and the Hebrides have been seen swimming nose to tail in circles in what may be a form of mating behaviour. Despite their large size and threatening appearance, basking sharks are not aggressive and are harmless to humans. It is listed as Vulnerable by the IUCN.

photo credits: wiki, wiki, wiki

Cuteness alert: A baby coast horned lizard found on McGinty Mountain at the San Diego National Wildlife Refuge in California. Established in 1996, the San Diego Refuge protects habitats for threatened and endangered species, migratory birds, and rare plants and animals found in a variety of habitats. Photo by usfws biologist John Martin.

Did you know that it is a serious crime to buy and sell North American migratory and predatory birds on our continent?

Recognizing that threatened animals often move beyond national boundaries, in 1918 both Canada and the United States of America both signed onto the “Migratory Bird Treaty Act”.

This act created a unified, multinational, front in the protection and conservation of over 800 indigenous bird species including eagles, owls and crows. This is not some piece of junk legislation, abiding by these rules has had a significant impact in the stability and future of these species.

As a consequence of these laws, anyone offering you local or modern specimens is most likely putting themselves and yourself at risk for major fines (if not imprisonment)! For more information and a full list of species restricted please research the “Migratory Bird Treaty Act”. #CollectResponsibly

Photo via: Cincinnati Zoo.


The Barnett Trade Musket,

Made in England by the Barnett Company, the Barnett Trade musket was a popular firearm of many arctic and subarctic Native American tribes such as the Inuit.  First produced in 1821, they were made to be lightweight and rugged.  They featured a short barrel, making it easier to wield on long hunting trips or journeys.  The trigger guard was enlarged as was the trigger itself to make the musket easier to fire with gloved hands.  Most were smoothbore, to allow hunters to hunt fowl as well as land animals as many Inuit peoples supplement their diet by hunting various migratory bird species.  The earliest models were flintlock, but later models sported the more advanced percussion lock.  The Barnett also had a dragon figure on the left hand side of the stock, as many Inuit demanded authentic pieces rather than cheap knockoffs.

Typically these muskets were traded by British and American companies such as the Hudson Bay Company, the Northwest Fur Company, the Makinaw Company, and the American Fur Company.  Usually they were traded to the Inuit in return for valuable Arctic goods such as animal pelts or walrus ivory.  Production continued well into the late 1800’s, and they were so well made that many are still in use today.



“Five years ago, at just 22, I moved from Ohio to Rock Springs, Wyoming, to work for the BLM under the chicagobotanicgarden’s Conservation and Land Management Internship Program. I was a Seeds of Success Intern, so my field partner and I traveled around the field office collecting hundreds of thousands of seeds for restoration, research, and native plant materials development.

I worked back east for a year, but…the west is the best! So I applied to the CLM internship program again, and requested to work in one of the southwest deserts. I ended up in Needles, California, collecting seeds for the SOS program.

I was offered a Student Career Experience Program (now Pathways Program) position in Needles, was accepted into the Master of Science in Forestry program at Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff, Arizona, and I’ve been here ever since.

At work, I’m researching the genetic study of sky island white fir populations in the Kingston Range Wilderness of the Needles Field Office. A fir is one of the more popular species used as Christmas trees – picture that in the middle of the Mojave Desert! These mountains are so special – they serve as “rest areas” for migratory bird species and are a hide-out for mountain lions, bobcats, and desert bighorn sheep. There are several plants that grow in this wilderness and nowhere else in the world.

At the end of the day, though, National Conservation Lands are important to me because, whether at work or on the weekends, I spend a lot of time in, on, and around National Conservation Lands. I’ve backpacked up crazy scary mountains in the Kingston Range Wilderness to look for the elusive white fir trees. During a backpacking trip in the Chemehuevi Mountains Wilderness, it rained for almost 12 hours, and I got to hike in fog in the middle of the desert. I’ve been to all the wilderness areas in the Needles Field Office, and I always find something new and interesting - be it a tiny flower, a new water source seeping up from the ground, or bighorn sheep peering at me from the next ridge over.

When I get stressed out by school or overwhelmed at work, the only thing that truly fixes me is getting out into the wilderness. I ditch my phone, my computer, and my proximity to roads and cars and electricity. National Conservation Lands and Wilderness make you get out of your car, and totally surrounded by nature. I wouldn’t have it any other way.”

Note: The #conservationlands15 Social Media Takeover is a 2015 monthly celebration of the 15th anniversary of the BLM’s National Conservation Lands.

anonymous asked:

So I started to notice something from replaying the games/watching the show. Many water pokemon can be found in both fresh and sea water and the show often shows trainers letting their pokemon play in lakes. From a biology perspective can you think of anything that would allow pokemon to live in both types of water? I know in real life theres fish like salmon that go back and forth between the ocean and rivers during their life but that seems more of a gradual change vs a sudden change.

Nice question! Whilst there are a good few strictly marine water pokemon, and (I think) some strictly freshwater pokemon, it is definitely true that for many, you can find them across aquatic habitats, from oceans to rivers. Do we see this in nature?

Whilst the majority of both seawater and freshwater animals are Stenohaline i.e. animals that can’t tolerate a change in salinity, quite a good few animals are Euryhaline i.e. animals that can tolerate a range of  salinities. For example, as you mention, Salmon, and other fish such as striped bass are Anadromous i.e. they migrate from the sea to freshwater to spawn, whereas other animals, such as eels are Catadromous i.e. they move from freshwater to the sea to spawn.

For these migratory species, adapting to the different salinities is a gradual process, for example salmon smolt (a juvinile stage) that hatched in freshwater, spend time in brackish intermediate estuarine water between the sea and river in order to gradually adapt to more salty conditions.

However, other Euryhaline animals include those that live in habitats such as estuaries, e.g. bull sharks and mud snails, mangroves e.g. white spot jellyfish and crab eating frogs (and evidently, crabs)  and rockpools, e.g. lots of shore crab species and gobies. The salinity in these habitats changes quite regularly - and thus many of these animals must be able to adapt to changing salinities, sometimes multiple times a day with the tides, so this is not neccassarily a gradual proccess. 

Even so, most animals can’t survive such changes. Why is living in a different salinity such a dangerous thing? Well, to understand this you have to reach your mind back to school biology, and to the magical phenomenon of osmosis.

Remember, water will always want to move to where there is a higher solute concentration. When we are talking about salinity, we are obviously talking about the conentration of salt ions.

For a saltwater shark, it’s blood is isotonic to its surroundings i.e. it has a similar salt concentration to that of the seawater.  This means that there is no osmotic pressure for water to exit it’s cells to the outside sea water, or visa versa. Sharks, as well as hagfish, are osmoconformers in that they maintain an internal environment that naturally matches their external environment. Most marine invertebrates too are osmoconformers with blood and bodily fluid salt concentrations matched to seawater. The issue is, that if you move these animals into freshwater, suddenly their blood and body fluid is a lot saltier than the outside environment, and thus there is a high osmotic pressure for the water around them to move into their bodies and intuitively, pressure builds, cells burst, and byebye animal. (Bullsharks are the only euryhaline sharks, and they can only survive in brackish and freshwater due to highly specialised kidneys)

What about fish? Teleost fish (the group of bony fish that you think about when you hear the word fish - so like from salmon to sardine etc etc.) are osmoregulators i.e. they maintain a constant internal solute concentration regardless of the outside water concentration. Freshwater fish have a body solute concentration much lower than seawater, but still more concentrated than freshwater, so there is still an osmotic pressure for water to continually move into their body.

Fun fact, the common ancestor of all teleost fish (so basically most modern fish you can think of) actually evolved in freshwater and then moved back into the sea, so even marine fish will have relatively dilute blood concentration similar to freshwater fish, meaning that there is a strong osmotic pressure for water to leave their bodies into the higher solute concentration of the saltwater around them, leaving them in danger of becoming severely dehydrated (this is what kills freshwater fish that are put in saltwater)

How do teleost fish maintain their internal body concentration? The diagram below this explains this, and it includes simple behaviours, including drinking lots of seawater in the case of marine fish, and never drinking anything in the case of freshwater fishes.

SO to finally answer your question, it would be possible for water type pokemon to be euryhaline i.e. live in both freshwater and saltwater if they use the strategies of real life euryhaline animals.

For osmoregulators, such as fish Pokémon (as well as cetaceans etc.), a gradual change in osmoregulatory behaviour and physiology, as seen with migrating species such as salmon, can allow them to live in both freshwater and saltwater habitats.

For osmoconformers, such as shark, and invertebrate pokemon, either speciealised kidneys are required (for shark pokemon), as with bull sharks, or the pokemon must be able to withstand matching and conforming their internal solute composition to that of the outside environment (for invertebrate pokemon) as with shore crabs.

TL;DR Its plausible that water types can adapt to both saltwater and freshwater conditions.


European Spider Crab (Maja squinado)

Also known as the spiny spider crab or spinous spider crab, the European spider crab is a  migratory species of  "spider crab" that occurs in the north-east Atlantic and Mediterranean Sea. European spider crabs feed on a large variety of organisms, ranging from seaweeds and molluscs in the winter, and echinoderms in the summer. European spider crabs start migration in autumn and some individuals can cover great ranges like 100 miles (160 km) in eight months.


Animalia-Arthropoda-Crustacea-Malacostraca-Decapoda-Brachyura-Eubrachyura-Heterotremata-Majoidea-Majidae-Maja-M. squinado

Image(s): Govern de les Illes Balears