Posted by: atowhee | September 29, 2021

IBW–ONE MORE VICTIM OF MAN’S GREED AND IGNORANCE

The U.S. goverment finally admitted the Ivory-billed Woodpecker is extinct, a bird for which there has been no confirmed evidence of survival since World War II, nearly eighty years if you’re keeping score.
Here’s a wonderful poem by poet/ornithologist, Pepper Trail, of Ashland:

Audubon was not the first artist to draw the big guy. Alexander Wilson put them into his book. Wilson once  wounded one, took it back to his hotel room, tied a string around its leg, then he went to dinner. When he returned the bird had destroyed much of the furniture in his room!

Wilson was justly humble: “This majestic and formidable species, in strength and magnitude, stands at the head of the whole class of Woodpeckers…Nature seems to have designed him a distinguished characteristic in the superb carmine crest and bill of polished ivory with which she ornamented him.”

Writing around 1840 Thomas Nuttall tried to warn us; “He is never found in the precinct of cultivated tracts; the scene of his dominion is the lonely forest amidst trees of the greatest magnitude. His reiterated trumpeting note, somewhat similar to the high tonesd of the clarinet…”

The first known color image was done by Catesby in the early 19th Century–imagine that big bird was common back when native forests covered the Eastern Seaboard:

Click here for article on the newly admitted extinctions.


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