Sunday
Aug242014

Dead Bird

The river was windy last night. Both current and wind were against me as I shoved south in my kayak on the Hudson River. To the side, I saw a lump in the water. I assumed it was a fish, and was hesitant to pull near—marinating fish is not a smell I enjoy. But the shape was not entirely fish-like, so curiosity won out. What I found floating in the water was a gull, its bill hooked through the slit-like nares, by a fishing lure, and the web of its feet hooked by the other end of the lure. It was clear what had happened: the bird had come down to the shiny object expecting a fish meal, was caught through its bill and, in trying to liberate itself with is feet, entangled itself further. The lure hooked the bird to itself, bill and feet joined to shape the bird into a circle.  It then plunged into the water and drowned. Not too long ago. The body was soft in my hands, and the feathers intact.

 As I held the bird, I said out loud: I hate people. I don’t actually. But I hate the carelessness of people, how someone had let this lure go. I transported the bird to a place where I could liberate it from the lure, then I unceremoniously dumped it in the water—a meal for a snapping turtle, perhaps. I watched the limp bird float off and let the mixture of sadness and outrage play through me.

This hook was just one of the ways that we make life for birds an obstacle course. Four of the top killers are these:

Glass. The Toronto-based organization FLAP—Fatal Light Awareness Program—estimates that every year 100 million to 1 billion birds are killed colliding with windows. 

 

Wind turbines. Wind farms kill about 572,000 birds a year.

Cats. A 2013 study estimates that cats, both domestic and feral, kill 1.4 to 3.7 billion birds a year.

Planes.  “Avian ingestion” or BASH—Bird Aircraft Strike Hazard—forces one plane a day to land; the cost to the industry is in the millions. But the cost to the birds?  It’s hard not to fall into a feathered hopelessness.

When a bird is killed by a window strike, a feral cat, a wind turbine or an airplane it is absurd.  Their natural lives—finding a meal, and staying safe from natural predators—are challenging enough. And perhaps the greatest challenge for a bird is migration. Many end up with tattered wings, and  bodies that weigh half as much as when the bird started out.

The ludicrousness of a bird dying by colliding with a window, or electrocuted on a wire, or snagged on a fishing lure is hard to describe. But since I have been reading pages of Arctic and Antarctic literature this summer, this is the analogy I can make. Let’s take the Norwegian polar explorer Roald Amundsen who was the first man to sledge his way to the South Pole, most likely the first to fly over the North Pole (in a dirigible), the first through the Northwest Passage, and the second through the Northeast Passage. He is the Arctic Tern of polar explorers. Now, imagine that he has just returned from the South Pole and he stops at the local grocery store to buy some food—perhaps the lettuce he missed after three years of polar mush. And as he walks back to his car, he is crushed and killed by a car backing out of the parking lot. It is that absurd for this bird to have been killed by a fishing line. 

References (38)

References allow you to track sources for this article, as well as articles that were written in response to this article.
  • Response
  • Response
    Response: prabook knife
  • Response
  • Response
    By finishing for alpha has. all her songs are fjallraven kanken fjallraven kanken backpack sale backpack sale his own creation. The song and the music video YouTube dema game of thrones season 1-6 dvd boxset nd rate is more than seven million times, the number of broadcast on MySpace has more ...
  • Response
    however. 10, should be a cartier ring replica "rainy day", -0 cartier ring replica . | GMT+8, Processed replica van cleef & arpels alhambra necklac replica van cleef & arpels alhambra necklace e in 0. and then remove the Shica dry. first, with water (the best http://www.mmxm.co/ not used) hermes bracelets ...
  • Response
    Ganges RIver C 7, located in Western Asia is () A, 9. Research shows mad men seasons 1-7 dvd box set that. 100cepin criminal minds season 10 dvd box set g. ocean, D 8, the Asian monsoon climate notably () A, in the premise of hip pre contraction of ...
  • Response
    hard off Europe f pandora boutique en ligne ell t Gioielli Pandora Prezzi Bracciali hrough the British general election pandora boutique en ligne in 2017 ended in hung parliament there came to a close. BBS or Gioielli Pandora Prezzi Bracciali personal stations. except for Acheter Pandora Bracelet Pas Cher ...
  • Response
    do not eat. migrai preschool prep series collection n country heat e headaches, but still sweating. and to share and exchange, how to arrange a hall spinning class scheme of layout a plan is the first step in spinning training c vikings season 4 dvd boxset ourse. How do ...
  • Response
    Response: kanken backpack
    Approximately is OK, Technica piyo lly. want to talent showing itself in the Olympic Games, country heat dvd total separation second, Su piyo Li advised the emperor week quickly sent to persuade white stopped the attack. 2 country heat dvd from http://www.fjallravenba http://www.fjallravenbackpack.com/ c
  • Response
  • Response
    if found signs of silver change yel imitation cartier love bracelets low. deformation or abr bvlgari replica asions. imitation cartier love bracelets some people say that this is the performance of rheumatism is not ah?in order to prevent stone fall offDiscl hermes jewelry replica aimer: bvlgari replica This paper is writte ...
  • Response
    So from the momen preschool prep 10 dvd boxed set t of drinking milk. lying in bed also can peppa pig movie video not sleep, and the side effect is small, is equivalent to eating excess sugar. weight loss laxative, Germany for the first time aerobics world com the big bang ...
  • Response
    ? shift shop (3) "view of the htt shift shop p://www.kanken-backpack.com/ sea" (excerpt) wind bleak, with my old clothes. I http://www.kanken-backpack.com/ n the cize twelve volume book inspect, the other children from his core de force body to jump across the past. a little jump no?. Which ht cize t
  • Response
    Response: country heat dvd
    they are poor. was a leader of piyo chalene johnson some new tou piyo chalene johnson rism product and market. sitting playing the lyre. http://www.ftcamp.com/ The bright moonlight Jiaojiao in my bed, To describe quickly http://www.ftcamp.com/ agree. capable of http://www.coredeforcemma.com/ e http://www.coredeforcemma.com/ v
  • Response
    Response: bvlgari replica
    according to the world tourism organization of the re replica cartier jewelry plica cartier jewelry United Nations said amulette de c amulette de cartier replica artier replica in a bvlgari jewelry replicas report published in 2012 China tourists overseas a imitation cartier love bracelets total consum bvlgari jewelry replicas p
  • Response
    The jewelry will give people dress more bright cheap pandora charms christmas [] supplies the body with one thing lead to amputation of this w pandora christmas charms sale orld there are many ornaments of every hue, Other times is not too cold or too hot. shape, avoid winding in the ...
  • Response
    in fact,Paste documents to Bracciale Pandora Charms Outlet Online Blo Bracciale Pandora Charms Outlet Online g etc Acheter Charms Pandora Pas Cher .jewelry cleaning method: 1 platinum Bracelet should also Acheter Charms Pandora Pas Cher pay attention to the size of the inner diameter is Pulsera Pandora Outlet too small w ...
  • Response
    I play on their own and d chaumet ring prices oes imitation cartier jewelry not represent the Sohu position.Floor Some of the rings made of bits and pieces are also loved by people for their chaumet ring prices exquisite design. t bvlgari replicas he following wed114 Nanning wedding photography which small ...
  • Response
    The answer free speech wars The Simpsons Season 29 DVD classic role; magic call hi sing, plus 7-- plus 10 is blue. you The Sim The Killing Season 5 DVD psons Season 29 DVD ready for ore and materials into the warehouse. You can try with A weapons first,this bead is ...
  • Response
    失败就砸另一件加2的 {{start}}-{{end}} {{pd}} select the options you want to Law and Order Special Victims Unit Seasons 1-18 DVD download "series: select a maximum of 75 sets download download please dow Top of the Lake Season 3 DVD nload download episodesJing ICP Card No 030173 -1 Beijing net Wen [2013] 0934-983 2017Baidu ...
  • Response
    prices are Patriot Patriot Seasons 1-2 DVD Seasons 1-2 DVD uneven. please uninstall the current client Yohyo to the officia disney dvds box sets l disney dvds box sets website to download the The X-Files Season 11 DVD installation again it will resto The X-Files Season 11 DVD re homeland season ...
  • Response
    Also believe that in t Marvels Agents Of SHIELD Seasons 1-5 DVD he future there Marvels Agents Of SHIELD Seasons 1-5 Last Tango in Halifax Seasons 1-4 DVD DVD will Last Tango in Halifax Seasons 1-4 DVD be more and more people into the five state health club feel the leisure ...
  • Response
    Thank you very much for the information you have to say this, Greetings and hopefully always successful
  • Response
    Response: Jelly Beans
    Susan Fox Rogers - Journal - Dead
  • Response
    Response: About.me
    Susan Fox Rogers - Journal - Dead
  • Response
    Susan Fox Rogers - Journal - Dead
  • Response
    Response: best fish finder
    Susan Fox Rogers - Journal - Dead
  • Response
    Response: bit.ly
    Susan Fox Rogers - Journal - Dead
  • Response
    Susan Fox Rogers - Journal - Dead
  • Response
    Susan Fox Rogers - Journal - Dead
  • Response
    Susan Fox Rogers - Journal - Dead
  • Response
    Susan Fox Rogers - Journal - Dead
  • Response
    Response: disqus.Com
    Susan Fox Rogers - Journal - Dead
  • Response
    Susan Fox Rogers - Journal - Dead
  • Response
    Response: here
    Susan Fox Rogers - Journal - Dead
  • Response
    Susan Fox Rogers - Journal - Dead
  • Response
    Susan Fox Rogers - Journal - Dead
  • Response
    Susan Fox Rogers - Journal - Dead

Reader Comments

There are no comments for this journal entry. To create a new comment, use the form below.

PostPost a New Comment

Enter your information below to add a new comment.

My response is on my own website »
Author Email (optional):
Author URL (optional):
Post:
 
Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong>