Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Canada Warbler. Chuck-will’s-widow. Over-looked Birds. Checking Coax Cable.


It's "Winged Wednesday" again.    How time flies!

Canada Warbler

Canada Warbler by David Disher

The brightly-colored Canada Warbler is sometimes called the “necklaced warbler” because of the band of black streaks across its lemon-yellow breast.  An estimated 64% of the population nests in Canada’s boreal region.

This species spends less time on its breeding grounds than most warblers, being one of the last to arrive and among the first to depart; its total time on the breeding grounds may be no more than two months.

Breeding Bird Survey data show a population decline of 3.2% per year throughout the Canada Warbler’s breeding range, with the greatest declines in the Northeast.  Forest fragmentation, over-browsing of the understory by deer, acid rain, and the spread of the woolly adelgid (which kills fir and hemlock trees), have all reduced available habitat.

Another serious threat to Canada Warbler populations is the loss of habitat in the northern Andes, where a substantial portion of the population winters.

See how ABC is working to preserve habitat for the Canada Warbler and other birds!



Hey, Look Me Over!

image Chuck-will’s-widow: Michael Stubblefield

"Bird Conservation focuses on overlooked bird species which, I am sure you will agree, clearly points to the need for an examination of Mae West’s theory:

That it is better to be looked over, than it is to be overlooked.

As for American Bird Conservancy, we are increasingly being looked over, as evidenced by a growing roster of supporters and an ever-expanding list of achievements, and that is certainly all the better for birds.


So, what kinds of species are “looked over”? One kind
is those on the Endangered Species List, such as the
Whooping Crane or Red-cockaded Woodpecker.

Being included on this list has been highly beneficial for these
and most other species that have ended up there: money,
attention, and population recovery have followed.
But even there, listed species have been overlooked.

The Po’ouli, an Hawaiian honeycreeper, is now likely
extinct for lack of attention, despite ESA listing, and
many other endangered Hawaiian species continue to
decline through insufficient federal ESA funding. All in
all, though, for our most threatened birds, it is better
to receive the beneficial notice of ESA listing than not,
and overlooked species such as the Mountain Plover and
Greater Sage-Grouse would be better off listed.

Is it better to be an overlooked and unknown, rare
tropical forest species, or a species looked after on a
dedicated reserve? One could argue that anonymity has its benefits, as several individuals of each newly discovered
species are normally shot for scientific purposes if they can be found. Then, conservation action is too rarely taken.

But the reality is that more species likely become extinct due to habitat destruction because their existence was not known than from any other cause, so being overlooked is a dangerous predicament for any rare species. Better to be discovered then protected, as in the case of the Santa Marta Screech-Owl at the El Dorado Reserve in Colombia, or the Long-whiskered
Owlet in Peru.

These birds are now comprehensively looked over in reserves established by ABC and its partners (Fundación ProAves and ECOAN respectively) specifically for their conservation. Now you can even go and have a look yourself!

Visit on the web to find out how."

More about the 10 most overlooked species at:




Ray and I worked on the door that goes from my house into the workshop, it had been sticking again.  My washer and dryer are out there, so I often go through that door, even if we are not working.  I would really have to tug on it to open it.  We taped some carbon paper (yes, I still have some of that old fashioned stuff), over the top of the door, to see where it was rubbing.

He sanded some on the jam, as it is a metal door.  I stood on a chair, and looked at the top of the door.  There was a jagged bit of the wooden insert sticking up above the metal.  Ray cut that off with a jig-saw, so now the door works easily again.


We had other jobs to do over here, but Ray's HDTV has not been bringing in all the channels lately.  The cable comes from the house to the guest house, through the RVport, so we started there first, thinking that oxidation might be the cause.


We undid the connections, sprayed them with contact cleaner, and moved to the next connection. At each step we checked his TV, but no improvement.  There are a few more connections up in his attic, but this was getting aggravating. 

The coax cable could not be tested with the multimeter as there is no way we could get to both ends at once: , so we went up to my "Coax Bin" in the guest house attic, and found a very long length of coax cable.  It tested good. 

We connected it to the junction in the RVport and straight to the back of his TV.  Still no better.   OK, now what?  Then we strung that cable all the way from his TV to my living room TV's wall cable connection.  Still no better.  Just to be sure we went to where the guest house cable connects inside my garage, and sprayed it with contact cleaner.   Still no better. 

We spent most of the morning on this.  I wanted to make sure that the problem wasn't on my end.  My TV's are all working fine on all the channels, so I suggested that he take his TV next door to his son's house to see what it does over there! 


When I came back in the house, I started to go out the door to the workshop, yanked it hard, forgetting that it was fixed, and  I nearly fell on my derriere.


We had another little drizzle early in the morning.

The Conroe Courier said: "The rain that came down this weekend was a welcome sight, but officials warn it isn’t even close to enough to change drought conditions or reduce fire threats.

In Conroe, the National Weather Service recorded 0.73 inch of rain since Saturday. Broken down, Conroe received 0.02 inch of rain Saturday afternoon, 0.03 inch Sunday morning and 0.68 inch early Monday morning.

“In the long-term scheme of things, this is literally a drop in the bucket,” Fire Marshal Jimmy Williams said. “… Just because we get a little bit of rain, don’t start burning.” "     More at:


Bass Classic officials keeping an eye on sinking lake levels

"Organizers with one of the top competitive fishing events in the country say lower-than-anticipated water levels on Lake Conroe not only won’t hurt their upcoming tournament but might make it even more challenging and exciting.

The Toyota Texas Bass Classic, featuring 50 of the top professional anglers, returns to Lake Conroe Oct. 28-30 for the third consecutive year. The event, benefiting youth programs sponsored by the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, includes special fishing exhibits, trade show activities and concerts for the public.

“The fishing is likely to be better because of the lower lake levels,” said Lenny Francoeur, TTBC tournament director. “There are fewer places for the fish to hide.”"

More at:


The weather was fairly decent in the morning, so the windows and doors were open, and I left the cats out on the screen porch while we were working. 

But come noon, the cats had to come in, the AC turned on, and the house closed up for the day.

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