Sunday, July 5, 2009

"Off the Trail" interviews

Boise State Radio's Jyl Hoyt has recorded several interviews at The Peregrine Fund and its Archives of Falconry for her "Off the Trail" segment. Hopefully these brief (4-5 minute) audio files will themselves end up in the Archives, but meanwhile I will link to them here.

Another piece not recorded at P-Fund, on ospreys and baling twine, includes speculation that nesting ospreys use the bright orange polypropylene as a substitute for the brightly-colored lichens they often put in their bulky stick nests. Maybe so, but I think it's more likely collected for its own sake, as ospreys are well-known packrats. Other items documented in osprey nests include mops and brooms (those might have been picked up as sticks), plastic bags, Styrofoam cups, beer cans, fishnets, boots, doormats, bicycle tires, and Barbie dolls. As David Gessner writes in Return of the Osprey, "I've noticed that our local [Cape Cod] birds have a particular fondness for the shiny and artificial." Small wonder eyasses and even the occasional adult get ensnared... One can hope that radio pieces such as Jyl Hoyt's, along with articles in the popular and academic press, will eventually reduce the amount of litter available to the fish hawks, but it's a slender hope. (See previous review of the movie WALL-E.)

Enjoy the interviews; if any more appear, I'll try to update this post.

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