Learn your ABCs with Birdorable! Each letter of the alphabet is represented by a cute cartoon Birdorable bird. A is for Avocet, D is for Duck, and P is for penguin. This colorful poster is fun to look at and a cute way for bird lovers to learn their ABCs!
If you think our Birdorable birds are cute as adults, what about when they are babies? Below are some baby photos of the Black-crowned Night-Heron. Black-crowned Night-Herons are colonial nesters, building their nests in trees in close proximity to other herons, egrets, and ibises. Incubation takes about 25 days and the chicks leave the nest at about 30 days of age.
Photo by Andy Morffew (CC BY-ND 2.0)
Photo by Michael McCarthy (CC BY-ND 2.0)
Photo by U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (CC BY 2.0)
Photo by Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (CC BY-ND 2.0)
Photo by Mike's Birds (CC BY-SA 2.0)
Photo by U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (CC BY 2.0)
Recently our fulfillment partner Zazzle started offering All-Over Print t-shirts and we have since added some to our store. This week's featured t-shirt is our new Trumpeter Swan, which was recently added to our site, on an All-Over Printed Unisex Tank. The unisex tanktop fits both men and women and is printed on 100% spun polyster that looks and feels like cotton. The Trumpeter Swan is the largest species of waterfowl in the world. They live across northern parts of North America. Their all-white plumage and heavy black bill make them a striking animal. You can customize this tank top! Move the swan around, change the background color or style, add text or images. If you like this bird don't forget to check out our other Trumpeter Swan gifts.
Kites belong in the Accipitridae* family of birds of prey. They are divided into two subfamilies. Elaninae kites are sometimes considered to be "hovering kites" and are generally smaller in size. Milvinae kites may be known as "soaring kites" and tend to be larger birds.
There are approximately 22 recognized species of kite in the world. Eight belong to the Elaninae subfamily, while 14 are Milvinae kites.
Not all kites are called "kites". The Bat Hawk of Africa and Asia is an Elaninae kite with a falcon-like profile and a preference for dining on bats. The Black-breasted Buzzard of Australia is an eagle-like bird that is sometimes considered to belong in a different family or subfamily altogether.
Three different raptors in the subfamily Perninae are called kites, though they are not closely related to the other kites. They are the Grey-headed Kite, White-collared Kite, and Hook-billed Kite.
Some kites are migratory, while others are year-round residents throughout their range. The Mississippi Kite, for example, breeds across the southeastern United States and winters as far south as Argentina, while the Snail Kite is a permanent resident across its range.
Kites are found on all continents except for Antarctica.
Black Kites are found on four continents: Africa, Asia, Australia, and Europe. They are common throughout their range and may be the most abundant species of raptor in the world.
Most kite species lack global population concern, though some species have local issues (like the Snail Kite in Florida). The Letter-winged Kite of Australia and the Red Kite of Europe and Africa both have a conservation status of Near Threatened.
Red Kite by Tony Hisgett [CC BY 2.0]
In most kite species, adult birds all look alike. An exception to this rule is the Snail Kite. Male Snail Kites are mostly dark blue-grey, while females are brown with streaked underparts.
* Note that different taxonomical classifications may organize these and other birds in another way. As scientists learn more about birds and DNA, changes are noted and accepted and eventually integrated or rejected by various naming organizations and protocols.
Here are some interesting facts about the Green Heron, one of our newest Birdorable birds!
The Green Heron has had some interesting colloquialnames, including Fly-up-the-creek, Poke, Chalkline, Indian Hen, and Chucklehead.
Some Green Herons migrate, and some don't. Green Herons are year-round residents in most of the southern coastal parts of their range. Other birds migrate from their nesting grounds in the north a short distance south for the winter. They are considered to be mid-distance migrants.
Green Herons are one of the few bird species known to use tools. They will bait for fish using things like bread, leaves, or feathers to try to lure in fish. This video shows a Green Heron using an insect as bait:
There are several collective nouns used for herons. You might see a hedge of herons, a sedge of herons, or a siege of herons.
The oldest wild Green Heron on record lived to the age of 7 years and 11 months. This was discovered via data collected from bird banding.
The Green Heron used to be considered the same species as the Striated Heron and the Galapagos or Lava Heron. The species was then known as the Green-backed Heron. Some taxonomies still treat them as subspecies.
Green Herons may nest away from other herons, alone, or in a small group, or in a larger colony. Many heron species are colonial nesters but the Green Heron or may not nest this way, depending on availablity and defendability of feeding territory.
Green Herons have a shaggy crest that can be raised at will by the bird.