May 21, 2018 – American White Pelican (Pelecanus erythrorhynchos)
Breeding in parts of central Canada and the northwestern and central United States, these pelicans migrate to the southern coasts of the United States, much of Mexico, and parts of northern Central America. They feed on fish, tadpoles, salamanders, and crayfish, using their large bill pouches to capture their prey before swallowing it quickly, or dipping their heads underwater like some species of ducks. Groups sometimes work together to chase fish toward the shore so they can catch them more easily and individual birds often steal from each other or other species. Pairs build their nests in colonies on gravel, sand, or soil, creating a depression with their beaks and sometimes lining it with plant materials. Chicks join groups called creches at two or three weeks of age, leaving the nest but continuing to receive food from their parents.
May 20, 2018 – Red Shining-parrot or Maroon Shining-parrot (Prosopeia tabuensis)
These parrots are native to forested islands in Fiji and have been introduced to Tonga. They are sometimes considered conspecific with the Crimson Shining-parrot. Their diet includes a variety of fruits and other plant foods, such and mangos, papayas, bananas, berries, buds, seeds, and young leaves, as well as some insects. Breeding from May to October, they nest in cavities in trees or their branches. Only females have been observed incubating eggs and feeding chicks.
May 19, 2018 – Chorister Robin-chat or Chorister Robin (Cossypha dichroa)
These birds are found in evergreen forests in parts of South Africa, Lesotho, and Swaziland. They eat mostly insects, along with some fruit, foraging on the ground or in vegetation. Breeding from October to December, the females build open cup-shaped nests from moss roots, leaves, lichen, grass, and other materials in tree cavities. Females do all of the incubation, but both parents feed the chicks.
May 18, 2018 – Cape Sparrow (Passer melanurus)
These sparrows are found in semi-arid regions of southern and southwestern Africa. Foraging mostly on the ground, they eat seeds, fruits, nectar, and other plant foods, as well as insects, including ants, beetles, and termites. Pairs build ball-shaped nests from grass, weed stems, plant fibers, feathers, and other materials. Both parents incubate the eggs and feed the chicks.
May 17, 2018 – Hardhead, White-eyed Duck, Barwing, or Brownhead (Aythya australis)
These ducks are found only in Australia, though they are sometimes seen in New Guinea and on some nearby islands. Feeding on aquatic plants and animals, they forage while diving, using their feet to swim underwater. Females build nests in plants near water from reeds, sticks, and other plant materials, lining them with down and incubating the eggs alone.
May 16, 2018 – Tataupa Tinamou (Crypturellus tataupa)
These tinamous are found in parts of Ecuador, Peru, Brazil, Bolivia, Paraguay, and Argentina, mostly in semideciduous woodland. Foraging on the ground, often in pairs, they feed on ants, small snails and slugs, seeds, and other plant foods. They nest in shallow depressions on the ground, laying four or five shiny brown eggs.
May 15, 2018 – Kessler’s Thrush or White-backed Thrush (Turdus kessleri)
These thrushes are found in central China and parts of northeastern India. They mostly eat insects and worms during the summer, berries in the fall, and juniper berries in the winter, usually foraging on the ground. Breeding from May to August, they build their nests close to the ground in rocky areas with vegetation. Males join large foraging flocks during the breeding season.