Bird Calls Blog

Bird Calls brings birds to life on the page with a stream of bird-related stories, tips, perspectives, and more.

Green and noisy, restored island offers hope for Black-capped Petrel
The landing at Desecheo Island requires visitors to leap from a small boat in deep water onto black, volcanic rocks. We had delayed the trip once due to 10-foot seas generated by Hurricane Lee. Today, I was lucky, and our 90-minute boat ride from the west side of Puerto Rico was glassy calm, making the … Read More>>
Stepping Up for Birds — and Habitat
I've often heard people say that when habitat is destroyed, birds will just “move elsewhere.” But where is elsewhere exactly? In reality, suitable “elsewhere” habitat is either already occupied by other birds of the same species — or it isn't actually suitable in the first place. Shorebirds can't live in forests. Warblers don't exist on … Read More>>
Pilina: Talking to Hawaiians About their Relationships with Birds
In 2022 I had the opportunity to interview members of the native Hawaiian community through a Conservation and Justice Fellowship with American Bird Conservancy (ABC). My project, the Pilina Project, was concerned with understanding the experiences and connections that people have with native birds in Hawaiʻi. From an Indigenous lens, pilina (relationships) are a critical … Read More>>
The Hummingbird, the Marigold, and Indigenous Women's Perspectives
Mi abuelita stood in front of her colorful ofrenda for Día de Muertos. Her long black braid swayed to the rhythm of her favorite song, "El Sirenito," by Rigo Tovar. She sang along as she carefully moved around the jarritos filled with atole, casuelas full of mōlli, and photos of her family. The cempasúchil flower … Read More>>
Pilina: Reflections on Relationships with Birds and the Land While Growing up in Hawai‘i
When I was about eight years old, my father began making a habit of taking me and my five-year-old brother into the pineapple fields above Waialua, Oʻahu on the weekends. Technically, we were trespassing on private land owned by the pineapple companies. Eventually we got into trouble for it, but these are also lands that … Read More>>
Discovering My Duty
Healing cannot occur without confluence – without a coming together of things. I remember hearing the Sunday Mass bells ringing softly below the sounds of the belting geese. My family at once looked up half-expecting the pastor to announce, “You may be seated.” But there was no pastor. We were in the middle of Piedmont … Read More>>
Dawn Songs: For Birds and Humanity, a United, Diverse Voice
Dawn Songs: A Birdwatcher's Field Guide to the Poetics of Migration is an anthology edited by Jamie K. Reaser and J. Drew Lanham. The book features lyrical reflections on humanity's relationships with birds through the works of 60 writers. Proceeds from the book will support American Bird Conservancy's (ABC's) Conservation and Justice Fellowship program, which … Read More>>
Creating ABC's Conservation and Justice Fellowships
Over the next month, American Bird Conservancy (ABC) will publish a series of blog posts written by our 2022 Conservation and Justice Fellows on topics ranging from farmworker rights to the cultural importance of Hawaiian forest birds. The following is the origin story of ABC's fellowship program, written by ABC's Chief Diversity Officer Naamal De … Read More>>
ABC Birding: Palila Forest Discovery Trail, Hawai'i
Lay of the Land: Located on the island of Hawai‘i, the Mauna Kea Forest Reserve's Palila Forest Discovery Trail — designed and supported with help from American Bird Conservancy (ABC) — goes through one of the largest remaining tracts of high-elevation dry forest remaining in the state. Accessible only via four-wheel-drive vehicle, this area is home … Read More>>
ABC Garden Tour: Cutting Down Pesticide Use in a Native Plant-Rich Yard in Ohio
Hear the birds! Sniff the flowers! Drink some lemonade! Summer is in full swing here in Ohio, which means tons of time spent outdoors enjoying nature. Whether in your yard, on your fire escape, in a community garden, or throughout a public park, we humans LOVE tending to plants and digging in the dirt. It … Read More>>

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