HBW Alive Newsletter
Nº20, February 2016

Current state of the updating process


In HBW Alive, the process of updating the original Handbook of the Birds of the World content has two principal strands. Learn more about how we are adding both depth and breadth to the species accounts at the same time and how our team’s painstaking efforts with the earliest HBW volumes are advancing.

Eduardo de Juana
Editor, HBW Alive
 
News on HBW Alive
Species with Multimedia Links
Southern Crested Guineafowl
Currently more than 345 of the “new species” (resulting from splits) have multimedia links incorporated in their species accounts. See what we mean, for example, in the accounts of  Southern Crested Guineafowl (Guttera edouardi), Red-billed Emerald (Chlorostilbon gibsoni), Little White Tern (Gygis microrhyncha) or Wetar Scops-owl (Otus tempestatis).
We have added more than 380 multimedia links to the accounts of the 28 Merops species. Explore them!
Merops species
Spotted Bowerbird
Here are some highlights of species with recently incorporated links: Scaly-bellied Woodpecker (Picus squamatus), Siberian Rubythroat (Luscinia calliope), Chestnut-throated Apalis (Apalis porphyrolaema) and Spotted Bowerbird (Chlamydera maculata).
HBW Alive Features
HBW Forewords included in HBW Alive
Extinct birds
By popular demand... Many HBW Alive users have asked for the Forewords from the HBW series to be included in HBW Alive. So, last month we started uploading these unique ornithological pieces, each covering an interesting topic (e.g. nomenclature, conservation, the history of birdwatching, bioacoustics, climate change and birds) to HBW Alive.

We expect to have them all up and ready to enjoy next month; you can already explore Errol Fuller’s piece on Extinct birds and Ian Newton’s on Bird Migration.
 
A new IBC to be unveiled soon...
 
Our team has been working on a full make-over for the IBC that we think everyone is going to love. It will have a new look—based on HBW Alive’s design—and improvements in the ways for visitors to search and view material and for contributors to organize, share and enjoy their material. Also, the taxonomy from the HBW and BirdLife International Illustrated Checklist of the Birds of the World will be applied to the IBC, making it easier for HBW Alive subscribers to find photos, videos and sound recordings on the IBC.

IBC contributors will enjoy of all these enhancements for free and the IBC will continue to be OPEN AND FREE OF CHARGE for everyone.
 
Get the Most Out of My Birding
My Birding User Manual

A new My Birding User Manual is available! Divided into seven mini-chapters, the manual gives you a step-by-step tour through our bird sighting recording system, making it easier to navigate and get the most out of My Birding. Many users will be interested in the “Quick Start” chapter, which will help you jump-start your My Birding experience.
My printable checklist revamped
 
The printable checklist is a feature that all HBW Alive subscribers can use to produce a species list for a specific territory that is fully customized to one’s personal needs—an essential tool for any upcoming trip.
Now you can tailor your checklist by including, for example, the dates of the trip, sessions per day and very useful trip targets: species not on your Wordlist, species not on your territory list, “Heard only” species, and species of which you do not have videos/pictures/sound recordings. These and many more possibilities will make the printable checklist your inseparable list for your future birdwatching trips. Learn more in this tutorial.
Printable Checklist sample
News on Birds
New Taxa
Himalayan Forest Thrush
A new species of thrush, Himalayan Forest Thrush (Zoothera salimalii), has been described from the eastern Himalayas and northwest Yunnan. This population was formerly considered to be Plain-backed Thrush (Zoothera mollissima), until the team of authors lead by Per Alström discovered that mollissima and salimalii differ in song, altitude where they breed, genetics (two mitochondrial and two nuclear markers) and slightly in morphology.
Photo by Per Alström
Ornithological News
Anna's Hummingbird
A recent study has demonstrated that hummingbirds may become electrically charged through friction with plant structures and air particles, and even during self-grooming or via intra-specific contact, which increases the number of pollen grains that attach to them when they visit flowers.
 
Common Hoopoe
Pits in Common Hoopoe (Upupa epops) eggshells appear to increase hatching success. Read more.
 
A recent paper concluded that Whinchat (Saxicola rubetra) population declines may not be due to problems in their winter quarters.
 

First Country Reports

Muscicapa sibirica
Dark-sided Flycatcher (Muscicapa sibirica), one photographed on 1-5 October 2012 at Höfn, would be the first record for Iceland. It was identified originally as Spotted Flycatcher (Muscicapa striata), however a reexamination of the images by the original observers during January 2016 concluded it's a Dark-sided Flycatcher, which is therefore the first record for the Western Palearctic.
Report photo by Björn Arnarson
Siberian Rubythroat
Other interesting First Country Reports include Siberian Rubythroat (Luscinia calliope) in the Netherlands; Eyebrowed Thrush (Turdus obscurus) in Spain; Falcated Duck (Mareca falcata) and Baikal Teal (Sibirionetta formosa) in the Philippines;  Radde’s Warbler (Phylloscopus schwarzi) in Kuwait; and Yellow Tyrannulet (Capsiempis flaveola) in Honduras.
Report photo by Arnoud B. van den Berg
Read more   News on Birds   |   First Country Reports
IBC's Video of the Month
Red-crested Cotinga

Red-crested Cotinga

(Ampelion rubrocristatus)


An excited Red-crested Cotinga (Ampelion rubrocristatus) displaying its chestnut-maroon crest.

Recorded in Observatorio de Colibries, La Calera, Cundinamarca Department, Colombia, on 16 November 2015.
© Daniêl Jimenez
IBC's Photo of the Month
Lesser Jacana

Lesser Jacana

(Microparra capensis)


A Lesser Jacana (Microparra capensis) foraging amongst water lilies.

Taken in Culley's Dam, Port Edward, KwaZulu Natal Province, South Africa, on 1 September 2015.
© Stan Culley
IBC's Sound Recording of the Month
Himalayan Forest Thrush

Himalayan Forest Thrush

(Zoothera salimali)


A Himalayan Forest Thrush (Zoothera salimali) singing. This is a recently described species.

Recorded in Jang, Tawang District, Arunachal Pradesh, India, on 9 June 2009.
© Per Alström
New Publications
Bird Families of the World

Bird Families of the World
An Invitation to the Spectacular Diversity of Birds
By David W. Winkler, Shawn M. Billerman and Irby J. Lovette
 

Co-published by Lynx Edicions and the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, this work distills 17 volumes of the encyclopedic Handbook of Birds of the World into a single book. Bird Families of the World features the latest systematic research and summarizes the life history and biology of each group.
31 x 24 cm • hardback • c. 600 pages • 243 distribution maps
c. 750 colour photos • 2,336 bird figures (all genera Illustrated)
Better Birding

Better Birding
Tips, Tools, and Concepts for the Field

By George L. Armistead and Brian Sullivan


Better Birding reveals the techniques expert birders use to identify a wide array of bird species in the field—quickly and easily. Featuring hundreds of stunning photos and composite plates throughout, this book simplifies identification by organizing the birds you see into groupings and offering strategies specifically tailored to each group.
28.50€    .BUY NOW 
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