Date: 9/15/20 11:11 pm
From: Rusty Scalf <rscalf...>
Subject: Re: [MBBIRDS] Smoke birding question for the experts
From a friend living in the Texas Hill country who follows TXbirds:

_The guys in the trans-Pecos - west Texas, and Lubbock (south
panhandle)_
_are reporting higher than ever known numbers of western migrants.
Like_
_500 Wilson's in a day, etc. Unprecedented._

---
Rusty Scalf

> Anne
>
> The exact way in which different species orient during migration is somewhat of an unknown. Do all species do it the same way, or not? What is known is that birds use multiple different independent systems, from stars, to magnetic polarity, land features, polarity of light etc. They also can recalibrate systems, based on the angles of light at sunset, and they do not have to recalibrate daily, but every "once in a while." As such, they seem to have a pretty robust system for navigation. I don't think one need worry about the birds not migrating or getting lost strictly due to the fires and smoke. Although they may show more errors, and perhaps less efficient migration due to these errors.
>
> What is the bigger unknown and perhaps a key issue that may not be well studied is what the effect of the bad air has on their physiology. Birds are high metabolism critters, and when migrating they are puffing through a rather immense amount of air for their body size. They have a super efficient system that has no "dead air" when they breathe, unlike our lungs. So there is air passing through their lungs at all times, lots of it, more per unit mass that passes through our lungs. If there are issues where the birds cannot breathe properly, or their high energy flight requirements are not allowing for enough oxygen to get through, that could be a problem. I assume that this is not well studied, and is a big unknown, but I may be wrong.
>
> Take care,
>
> Alvaro
>
> Alvaro Jaramillo
>
> <alvaro...>
>
> www.alvarosadventures.com
>
> From: <mbbirds...> <mbbirds...> On Behalf Of Anne Spence
> Sent: Tuesday, September 15, 2020 9:28 PM
> To: Bird Box MPAS <mbbirds...>
> Subject: [MBBIRDS] Smoke birding question for the experts
>
> 9/15/20
>
> Was curious if a more expert birder, "ornithological/scientific-type" mind would be willing to
>
> try an answer a question:
>
> Since California has really never seen these types of fires & huge clouds of smoke that
>
> "wipe the coastland off the map," what do you think these clouds will do to migrating bird flocks?
>
> I've read the Audubon's internet article about how birds will react to fires. The article didn't really answer what the birds would do if they've already been migrating.
>
> If they can't see the moon while flying or sky while flying at night how can they navigate?
>
> Will they just stay in place until the smoke clears completely?
>
> Or move a little at a time?
>
> Hope this isn't a stupid question..
>
> Weather West [1]
>
> Audubon.org [2]
>
> Thanks,
>
> _Anne Spence_
>
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Links:
------
[1] https://weatherwest.com/archives/7532
[2] https://www.audubon.org/news/how-wildfires-affect-birds
[3]
https://groups.google.com/d/msgid/mbbirds/CAEU8__fY2E4eyjjHDy1OqPcnzko-mVcYW0QTTyR9O%2B1%3Du%<2Brp4g...>?utm_medium=email&amp;utm_source=footer
[4]
https://groups.google.com/d/msgid/mbbirds/021b01d68bee%24ea165de0%24be4319a0%<24...>?utm_medium=email&amp;utm_source=footer

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