New Theory on Avian Real-time Clocks, or a Twitcher's Lament

Subject: New Theory on Avian Real-time Clocks, or a Twitcher's Lament
From: Gil Langfield <>
Date: Mon, 06 May 1996 07:04:25 +1100
It is a well known fact that certain species of birds in certain locations
are able to determine Saturdays and Sundays from the other days of the week.
Rare birds all have this facility and even birds common in one faunal zone
seem to have the ability to develop this facility when they get lost and
turn up in another faunal zone.

What is not so well known is that this Real-time clock facility in Aves
extends to the determination of Easter and the holidays attached thereto
whereas Homo sapiens has great difficulty in fixing this date, certain
sub-species having it up to two weeks apart from others.

The fact that Aves can predict the date of Easter also proves the existence
of God, or the opposite.

I was able to test this new theory - which will be fully developed in my PhD
- last year ar Werribee.  A Lesser Yellowlegs, hopelessly lost, had been
reported at the Sewage Treatment Works and would normally be expected to
disappear before the twitchers were able to come on Saturday.  But this was
Easter week, so to prove my hypothesis, I went to Werribee on Good Friday,
and sure enough, it had gone overnight.

Yesterday, I joined the hordes of twitchers bound for Boort in north-central
Victoria to see the Redshank which had been there all week. As predicted,
when I got there after 3 hours of driving from Melbourne, it had gone.


Gil Langfield

<Prev in Thread] Current Thread [Next in Thread>
  • New Theory on Avian Real-time Clocks, or a Twitcher's Lament, Gil Langfield <=

The University of NSW School of Computer and Engineering takes no responsibility for the contents of this archive. It is purely a compilation of material sent by many people to the birding-aus mailing list. It has not been checked for accuracy nor its content verified in any way. If you wish to get material removed from the archive or have other queries about the archive e-mail Andrew Taylor at this address: andrewt@cse.unsw.EDU.AU