At 17:14 10/01/2002 +0800, Marilyn Davis wrote:
1. Violent hailstorms and other extreme weather events are often
associated with destructive winds. In these conditions a small bird
carrying leg flags is more vulnerable to severe buffeting compared to a
non banded individual. Commonsense tells me that a leg flagged/banded
bird is therefore greatly disadvantaged in its ability to maneuver in
extreme weather conditions therefore hindering its likely success to avoid
harm and find shelter.
I would question your commonsense as Russell has commented correctly there
would be no correlation.
2. I recognise and have no criticism of the obvious need to manage bird
habitats, using concerned volunteers and appropriate bird research and
field study methods as a tool for management. However i differentiate
from this, the largely unnecessary hobby like activity associated with
most bird banding projects. This includes catching, banding, flagging,
bleeding and otherwise handling etc. wild birds which on the available
evidence is often destructive to the very birds we desire to protect. I
simply cannot see that in most circumstances, bird banding contributes any
additional results that further justifies the need to manage or conserve
Have you any experience with observing bird banding? A little first hand
knowledge would help.
I have seen what I considered some 'hobby' banding, but this was about 10
years ago. It would be very rare now. There is now huge pressure from
their peers to ensure that banding serves a purpose. This is on top of all
the license conditions from all the authorities.
Even the banding of common birds in 'ordinary' habitat contributes to the
total knowledge. I have assisted at a banding site that I have birded many
times. I almost never saw Golden Whistlers and a few other species at this
site, and yet not only were quite a few banded, but a good proportion were
retraps. I have never failed to learn a lot at the few banding sessions
that I have assisted.
3. Re: bird banding projects that have been undertaken in recent years;
where are all the published works that have resulted from this amount of
activity? I am specifically referring to the published results from bird
banding studies that could partly justify it's impact; the publicly
available published results that would allow us to see that there has been
no unnecessary work or duplication. It is almost impossible to find
results that assist us to quote definitive statistics of where, when and
how many birds of what species have been banded and flagged to enable some
reasonable scrutiny of this activity.
Have you read the volumes of HANZAB? There is considerable information
included that was obtained from bird banding. Journals such as EMU and
other refereed journals include articles with data obtained from
banding. There are many PHDs, masters and honours degrees based on banding
work. These can be found through a literature search.
The Stilt and The Tattler are two journals that regularly publish results
of wader banding, retraps, sightings of leg flags, etc.
All banding data is publicly available centrally through the ABBBS, for use
in research, articles, etc. Banders are not allowed to keep their data to
If you went to your library and did a half reasonable literature search you
would find many more. You say that the information is 'almost impossible
to find'. I suggest that you have never looked.
Frank O'Connor Birding WA http://members.iinet.net.au/~foconnor
Phone : (08) 9386 5694 Email :
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