30 Oct '14, 1pm

geese

geese

A social bird adapts as the buffet line heats up By Marianne Lavelle Environmental Health News Abundant eelgrass beds within the Izembek Lagoon have been especially important for the Pacific black brant during its annual fall staging period, underway now at the tip of the Alaskan Peninsula. This always has been the key time for the brant to bulk up for its nonstop, transoceanic flight of 3,300 miles to Mexico that takes about 54 hours. Brants typically lose up to 25 percent of their body weight en route, and virtually the entire population – 160,000 birds – spends about two weeks feeding at Izembek. After decades of observing brants, Jim Sedinger, an environmental and resource sciences professor at University of Nevada, Reno, is struck by the variation in their personalities. They are immediately recognizable by their sleek black heads and breasts, set off by white necklac...

Full article: http://www.environmentalhealthnews.org/ehs/news/2014/oct/...

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