Sunday, December 22, 2013

Yellow-billed Magpie

Yellow-billed Magpie
Roseville, California, USA
Member of the Crows and Jays Family
§A Mischief of Magpies§

~true bird fact~ From the Crows-and-jays-are-really-smart-you-guys file: When a Yellow-billed Magpie dies, he receives a funeral. No, really, this is true (source). Nearby birds appear to experience grief. They swoop down to the body and hop around it making long squawking cries, and this goes on for quite some time.

How endangered are they? The Nature Conservancy has declared the Yellow-billed Magpie 'vulnerable', mainly because he has such a narrow range. This guy only lives in California's Central Valley, and, as such is especially susceptible to threats from any number of natural or human disasters. Populations are in decline since the outbreak of the West Nile Virus. It is estimated that literally half of all Yellow-billed Magpies died from the virus between 2004 and 2006.

Has not talked to his brother in years, but still cares about him deeply
Trusting to a fault
Is an active and well-known member of his local community
Not afraid to experience emotions deeply

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