Gitie's blog

The Birds of New Jersey - Book Review

 Author William J. Boyle. Jr. has over 40 years experience birding throughout the world.

His latest book includes all the species in the State of New Jersey from historical times to the present, with over 200 splendid photographs of the birds. The book includes maps showing where the birds can be found.

The range of birds includes migratory birds with the spring and fall times indicated.

Rare species and occasional visitors are also covered.

"If you live in or visit New Jersey, if the study of enjoyment of birds is a thread that runs through the fabric of your life, then you simple must own a copy of this book" ---- Pete Dunne, CCO, New Jersey Audubon.




Share this

The Real Facts About Bat Transmitted Diseases

courtesy Bats Qld and Long Grass Wildlife Refuge Centre


Grey flying foxThe incidence of Australian Bat Lysavirus (ABLV) in wild bats is about the same as the incidence of HIV in humans: between .09% and 1.2% of free-living population (1,2)

The instance is higher in sick animals that come into care. Bats with ABLV always die.

Responsible for two deaths (one of whom refused treatment). Post and pre-exposure treatment is 100% effective - not one vaccinated person has died from ABLV.

ABLV is saliva-borne and lives a short time outside the body.

ABLV kills. Vaccination is ESSENTIAL. In every continent except Australia and Antartica veterinarians, carers and members of the public are routinely vaccinated.

Humans catch Hendra (originally equine morbillivirus) from horses, not bats

No bat carer has ever caught Hendra. Screening 128 long-term bat carers found none had detectable antibodies (Selvey at al., 2006)

Bats do not suffer from or die from Hendra, but authorities have found antibodies in the amniotic fluid of bats and suspect they may be a host for the disease.... however

"This is all speculation though as we know that bats carry the virus but we don't know exactly how it gets into horses." Dr Stephen Prowse (2008), CEO of the Australian Biosecurty Cooperative research Centre for Emerging Infectious Disease

Share this

Green Cay Wetlands - Part 2

by Susan Collins


Reader Susan Collins shares some more of her magnificent photographs and memories from the Green Cay Nature Center at Florida.


Least Bittern

A Least Bittern inspects the duckweed for a juicy meal.

 Least Bitterns. the smallest of all herons live in freshwater marshes rich in dense vegetation or in mangroves. The Bitterns can straddle reeds which enables them to feed in water much deeper than other herons. The birds are very shy running away from intruders jumping from one stalk to another, taking short flights only if necessary and diving back into its favorite hiding spot in the thick vegetation. 


Share this

Green Cay Nature Center - Wetlands - Part 1

Photos by Susan Collins

Susan loves visiting the Green Cay Nature Center which is one of the newest nature centers in Palm Beach County and overlooks 100 acres of constructed wetlands.   The wetlands include emergent marshes, deep zones, alligator holes, cypress swamps and Seminole Chickee huts. The 1.5 mile elevated boardwalk takes the visitor through journey through a typical Florida wetland providing a great opportunity to learn about wildlife that live there. 

Susan, who is also a regular reader of Wild Bird Talking ezine has taken many magnificent shots of the birds that live in the wetlands and we are delighted to feature some them below.

American Coot

An American Coot (above) ponders on the reflections in the water

Coots are well known for their "show and tell" ways where they use their body postures, white undertail coverts, the degree to which they arch their wings their backs as well as the angle of their neck feathers to communicate their intentions. While these displays are often used to intimidate intruders, that is not their sole purpose.  Coots also use them to issue warning signals from predators like hawks or dangers like planes.  A healthy Coot populations symbolises healthy marshlands and places where the coot population is in decline indicates that many more vulnerable species are also endangered as their habitats rapidly disappear.


Stories about: 
Share this

Birds At The Bunya Mountains

On our recent trip to the Bunya Mountains (native rainforest in Queensland) we were delighted to find the famous bower of the Satin Bowerbirds.  the male (blue satin coloured bird below) had adorned the nest with blue objects that match his sweetheart's eyes.  He was attempting to woo her and impress her with his bower building abilities.

male satin bowerbird wooing female bowerbird


Stories about: 
Share this


Subscribe to RSS - Gitie's blog