Wildlife

Top 25 Birds Protected by the MBTA

This week we honour the Migratory Bird Treaty Act on 1918, an act which has protected countless birds from being hunted and exploited for the last 100 years. The strength of this act is now being threatened by legislation changes which no longer make companies accountable for bird deaths. Here the birding community can have their say, we can all take to social media and voice our opinions on these changes. You can also sign the petition here. This week we present just 25 of the species that are protected by this act, although the act covers over 1000 different species! Legislation like this can make immense impacts on bird communities and this week we commemorate the many bird lives saved by this act.

The Black-tailed Godwit is one of the palearctic migrants protected by the MBTA, and rightly so as they are considered Near-Threatened. This is mainly due to the intensification of agriculture in their breeding range (Vipul Trivedi)
This beautiful Collared Kingfisher was photographed in Goa, India (Vishal Monakar)
Many Tern species undertake long migrations but the Greater Crested Tern appears to be fairly resident around their breeding areas (Kishore Reddy)
These Little Stints breed in the Arctic Tundra and overwinter in Africa and India (Edwin Godinho)
The Mountain Bluebird of North America migrates within the continent between the USA and Canada and Alaska. The MBTA protects birds moving between these countries (Tim Nicol)
During the breeding season the Reed Bunting switches its diet from seeds to invertebrates, the protein is important for developing chicks (Antonis Tsaknakis)
The Light-mantled Sooty Albatross is a pelagic seabird of the Southern Ocean, they breed on islands here such as Marion Island (Judi Fenson)
The Bluethroat breeds in northern Eurasia and Alaska and overwinters in southern Eurasia and central Africa (Aman Sharma)
Wood Ducks inhabit water bodies surrounded by woodland, they also prefer ponds created by beavers (Barbara Wallace)
Eurasian Siskins appear to migrate in stable groups which are maintained year by year (Edwin Godinho)
This Brown Pelican was photographed in California, USA by Leslie Reagan
This Northern Hawk Owl occurs in northern Eurasia, Alaska, Canada and northern USA (Teri Franzen)
Common Redpolls belong to the finch family and as such they eat mainly seeds and small insects (Jola Charlton)
Peregrine Falcons hunt predominantly birds, 200 different bird species have been recorded in their diet (Vipul Trivedi)
Common Sandpipers can fly distances of up to 4000 kilometres without stopping! (Asutosh Pal)
Little Stints are sociable, they can be found in groups of several thousand birds (Riya Roy Pahuja)
This Pine Bunting was photographed in its wintering range in northern India (Rick Toor)
Calliope Hummingbirds breed in the north of North America before migrating up to 4500 kilometres to Mexico for a milder winter (Tim Nicol)
A Common Eider photographed in Grindavík, Iceland by Michal Richter
The White-throated Sparrow breeds in Canada and north-eastern USA and spends the winter further south in the USA, this individual was photographed in Pennsylvania (Melissa Penta)
A group of Tufted Ducks take flight (Subhamoy Das)
Ospreys are powerful hunters, they can take fish up to two kilograms (Pallabi Mitra)
A Black-tailed Godwit probing for food in the water (Radhakrishnan Sadasivam)
The Green Heron is a sub-species of the Green-backed Heron. The gReen-backed Heron occurs throughout the globe, asides from the polar regions, but this sub-species occurs only in the uSA  (Barbara Wallace)
The Acorn Woodpecker occurs along the west coast of North America. They prefer oak woodlands, as they feed mainly on acorns (Judi Fenson)

Our mission is to build a global community around the freedom and beauty of birds in the wild as ambassadors for the natural ecosystems that they depend upon. They are the music, decoration, and character of every terrestrial habitat on the planet and have been around since the dinosaurs. They are the witnesses and ambassadors of the awesome power of nature. The wide availability of good, cheap optics has opened their world to us for the last few decades. Amazing, affordable DSLR cameras with long lenses are delivering brilliant digital bird imagery to online communities.

We are in a day-and-age during which more bird species are threatened with extinction than ever before. The Wild Birds! Revolution aims to publish the “Top 25 Wild Bird Photographs of the Week” to 1 million people every week by the end of the year. That is a revolution that will change the world! Join thousands of other weekend naturalists, photographers, birders, experts, hikers, nature-lovers, guides, scientists, conservationists and artists that share the thousands of wild bird photographs submitted to the Wild Bird Trust website and Facebook page. Thousands of wild bird enthusiasts are going out every day to photograph our planet’s beautiful birdlife. Pick up your camera, fill your bird feeder, open your heart, and join the Wild Birds! Revolution!!

Edited by Christie Craig, Campaign Manager

Top 25 Wild Bird Brood Parasites

Steve Boyes has dedicated his life to conserving Africa's wilderness areas and the species that depend upon them. After having worked as a camp manager and wilderness guide in the Okavango Delta and doing his PhD field work on the little-known Meyer's Parrot, Steve took up a position as a Centre of Excellence Postdoctoral Fellow at the Percy FitzPatrick Institute of African Ornithology. He has since been appointed the Scientific Director of the Wild Bird Trust and is a 2014 TED Fellow. His work takes him all over Africa, but his day-to-day activities are committed to South Africa's endemic and Critically Endangered Cape Parrot (Poicephalus robustus). Based in Hogsback Village in the Eastern Cape (South Africa), Steve runs the Cape Parrot Project, which aims to stimulate positive change for the species through high-quality research and community-based conservation action. When not in Hogsback, Steve can be found in the Okavango Delta where he explores remote areas of this wetland wilderness on "mokoros" or dug-out canoes to study endangered bird species in areas that are otherwise inaccessible. Steve is a 2013 National Geographic Emerging Explorer for his work in the Okavango Delta and on the Cape Parrot Project.

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