Wilson's Warbler

Rethinking Bird Names

Of the 149 birds of North America that have honorific names, all of them are named after white people. Whether they were named after the “discoverer” of the birds (Wilson’s Warbler, for example, named by Alexander Wilson) or in honor of someone else (like Franklin’s Gull, named in honor of the leader of a scientific expedition), these birds were all named in a time and place where only white men were allowed to be in these positions of power and privilege.

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Field Notes: Molt Strategies

During late summer the plumages of young birds are fresher and not overly worn. Adults on the other hand show dull, worn feathers. In the fall adults have a full molt including the wings and tail feathers. Juveniles have a full body molt in the fall a month or so later than the adults, but retain their tail and primary and secondary wing feathers. 

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