March 8, 2012
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This post was modified from its original form on 08 Mar, 20:12
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Could I please have an N??? Hi Marilyn "The Paw"!! Glad to see you here!!
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"T" Please, and Kim -- Hello back at ya!!!
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CONGRATULATIONS, Sa Full Moon!
Help Save the Albatross
- 1715 days ago - youtube.com
Congrats Sa F! "Gabriela, You signed on December 4, 2011.
Your signature has been delivered to:
South African Department of Environmental Affairs" Thanks for posting Nyack.
Wow FullMoon, Congrads. This game went fast before I could mention a letter. Here we call them Seagulls in Texas and always so wonderful to feed on the beaches.
Already signed on Feb. 4th, 4012 Thank you Nyack
Albatrosses, of the biological family Diomedeidae, are large seabirds allied to the procellariids, storm-petrels and diving-petrels in the order Procellariiformes (the tubenoses). They range widely in the Southern Ocean and the North Pacific. They are absent from the North Atlantic, although fossil remains show they once occurred there too and occasional vagrants are found.
Albatrosses are among the largest of flying birds, and the great albatrosses (genus Diomedea) have the largest wingspans of any extant birds. The albatrosses are usually regarded as falling into four genera, but there is disagreement over the number of species. They have a wingspan of 11 feet.
Albatrosses are highly efficient in the air, using dynamic soaring and slope soaring to cover great distances with little exertion. They feed on squid, fish and krill by either scavenging, surface seizing or diving. Albatrosses are colonial, nesting for the most part on remote oceanic islands, often with several species nesting together. Pair bonds between males and females form over several years, with the use of 'ritualised dances', and will last for the life of the pair. A breeding season can take over a year from laying to fledging, with a single egg laid in each breeding attempt. A Laysan albatross, named "Wisdom" on Midway Island is recognized as the oldest wild bird in the world; she was first banded in 1956 by Chandler Robbins.
Of the 21 species of albatrosses recognised by the IUCN, 19 are threatened with extinction. Numbers of albatrosses have declined in the past due to harvesting for feathers, but today the albatrosses are threatened by introduced species such as rats and feral cats that attack eggs, chicks and nesting adults; by pollution; by a serious decline in fish stocks in many regions largely due to overfishing; and by long-line fishing. Long-line fisheries pose the greatest threat, as feeding birds are attracted to the bait, become hooked on the lines, and drown. Identified stakeholders such as governments, conservation organisations and people in the fishing industry are all working toward reducing this bycatch.
THREATS and CONSERVATION
In spite of often being accorded legendary status, albatrosses have not escaped either indirect or direct pressure from humans. Early encounters with albatrosses by Polynesians and Aleut Indians resulted in hunting and in some cases extirpation from some islands (such as Easter Island). As Europeans began sailing the world, they too began to hunt albatross, "fishing" for them from boats to serve at the table or blasting them for sport. This sport reached its peak on emigration lines bound for Australia, and only died down when ships became too fast to fish from, and regulations stopped the discharge of weapons for safety reasons. In the 19th century, albatross colonies, particularly those in the North Pacific, were harvested for the feather trade, leading to the near extinction of the Short-tailed Albatross.
Of the 21 albatross species recognised by IUCN on their Red List, 19 are threatened, and the other two are near threatened. Two species (as recognised by the IUCN) are considered critically endangered: the Amsterdam Albatross and the Chatham Albatross. One of the main threats is commercial long-line fishing, as the albatrosses and other seabirds--which will readily feed on offal--are attracted to the set bait, become hooked on the lines and drown. An estimated 100,000 albatross per year are killed in this fashion. Unregulated pirate fisheries exacerbate the problem.
On Midway Atoll, collisions between Laysan Albatross and aircraft have resulted in human and bird deaths as well as severe disruptions in military flight operations. Studies were made in the late 1950s and early 1960s that examined the results of control methods such as the killing of birds, the leveling and clearing of land to eliminate updrafts and the destruction of annual nesting sites. Tall structures such as traffic control and radio towers killed 3000 birds in flight collisions during 1964-1965 before the towers were taken down. Closure of Naval Air Facility Midway Island in 1993 eliminated the problem of collisions with military aircraft. Recent reductions in human activity on the island have helped reduce bird deaths, though lead paint pollution near military buildings continues to poison birds by ingestion. Albatross plumes were popular in the early 20th century. In 1909 alone over 300,000 albatrosses were killed on Midway Island and Laysan Island for their plumes.
Another threat to albatrosses is introduced species, such as rats or feral cats, which directly attack the albatross or its chicks and eggs. Albatrosses have evolved to breed on islands where land mammals are absent but have not developed defences against them. Even species as small as mice can be detrimental; on Gough Island the chicks of Tristan Albatrosses are attacked and eaten alive by introduced house mice. Introduced species can have other indirect effects: cattle overgrazed essential cover on Amsterdam Island threatening the Amsterdam Albatross; on other islands introduced plants reduce potential nesting habitat.
Ingestion of plastic flotsam is another problem, one faced by many seabirds. The amount of plastic in the seas has increased dramatically since the first record in the 1960s, coming from waste discarded by ships, offshore dumping, litter on beaches and waste washed to sea by rivers. It is impossible to digest and takes up space in the stomach or gizzard that should be used for food, or can cause an obstruction that starves the bird directly. Studies of birds in the North Pacific have shown that ingestion of plastics results in declining body weight and body condition. This plastic is sometimes regurgitated and fed to chicks; a study of Laysan Albatross chicks on Midway Atoll showed large amounts of ingested plastic in naturally dead chicks compared to healthy chicks killed in accidents. While not the direct cause of death, this plastic causes physiological stress and causes the chick to feel full during feedings, reducing its food intake and the chances of survival.
Scientists and conservationists (most importantly BirdLife International and their partners, who run the Save the Albatross campaign) are working with governments and fishermen to find solutions to the threats albatrosses face. Techniques such as setting long-line bait at night, dying the bait blue, setting the bait underwater, increasing the amount of weight on lines and using bird scarers can all reduce the seabird by-catch. For example, a collaborative study between scientists and fishermen in New Zealand successfully tested an underwater setting device for long-liners which set the lines below the reach of vulnerable albatross species. The use of some of these techniques in the Patagonian Toothfish fishery in the Falkland Islands is thought to have reduced the number of Black-browed Albatross taken by the fleet in the last 10 years. Conservationists have also worked on the field of island restoration, removing introduced species that threaten native wildlife, which protects albatrosses from introduced predators.
One important step towards protecting albatrosses and other seabirds is the 2001 treaty the Agreement on the Conservation of Albatrosses and Petrels, which came into force in 2004 and has been ratified by thirteen countries, Australia, Argentina, Brazil and Chile, Ecuador, New Zealand, Spain, South Africa, France, Peru, Uruguay and the United Kingdom. The treaty requires these countries to take specific actions to reduce by-catch, pollution and to remove introduced species from nesting islands.
Congratulations Sa Full Moon.
Hi Nyack, Signed Albatross petition and thanx for all the info Congrats to Sa Full Moon !!!
Thank again Nyack!!! Thanks for the petitions and all the great info.
Congrats! Sa FullMoon!!!!!
Some people are mean to these birds on the beach by feeding them Alkaselcers (miss spelled) causing the birds to explode cause birds can't burp. It's a heavy fine if caught here. So sad when people do this. You can feed them bread but that's about it.
Congratulations SA Full Moon, did check on the petition Nyack and had signed last year, but sadly on 1,220 right now out of the needed 5,000! We should be able to do better than THIS!!! Thank you for this game! FUN
Jon we call them Sea Gulls too here and boy can they POOP!xx
great info on the albatross! congrats sa full moon!
Albatross petition was signed earlier
Albatross vs Seagull
Both seagulls and albatross are important avian members those live around sea. Despite the similarity about their habitats, the differences between seagulls and albatross are notable. It is fair enough for someone to understand that these birds’ referred common names would correctly depict their habitats, but seagulls only partially inhabit the sea. Therefore, it would be important to be aware of these two interesting birds to identify them well.
Seagull is an informally referred name for the gulls, and they belong to the Family: Laridae of the Order: Charadriiformes. There are more than 55 living seagull species. Generally, seagulls are medium to large sized birds with bodies, but the two extremes (the smallest and the largest) have weights of 200 grams and 1.75 kilograms. Usually, they are gray to white in colour, with black markings on their head and wings depending on the species. Seagull can swim and dive well with their webbed-feet. They are predominantly carnivorous, but sometimes demonstrate opportunistic omnivorous feeding habits. Seagulls are predators of fish and crabs, and they open wide their long beaks to catch large preys. They generally inhabit either coastal or inland environments, and particularly nest on ground. The nests are large, densely packed, and noisy colonies of seagulls. Studies have confirmed that seagulls have complex communication methods and tool usages. They are blessed with long lives that could go as high as forty years.
Albatross are large to very large birds belong to the Family: Diomedeidae. There are about 20 species according to the common acceptance about their classification, and they live in Southern and North Pacific Oceans, but absent in North Arctic. Albatross have something special about them as they have the largest wingspans among all the birds, and they in fact are the largest among all the flying birds. Albatross are exclusively carnivorous and excellent divers. Their webbed-feet are adaptations for swimming and diving. They have long bills with sharp edges, and the end of the upper mandible has a large hook. Characteristically, their bill has several horny plates with two tubes running over the top of the bill give them an acute sense of smell. Albatross have an excellent adaptation to remove salt from their diet, in which they excrete salt through the glands in their nostrils. They do not have a hind toe, but the other forwardly directed three toes. Upper side of the albatross wings are darker while the undersides are black and white. They usually nest in remote oceanic islands and live up to 50 years. However, there are records of 80-year old albatross as well.
Check out their feet
Thank you All
Thanks Nyack for the game and infos.
In portugues is Albatroz.
Congrats, Sa!!! Good one!!
Thank you Nyack....I stand corrected, though I did know that the Albratross (sp) was the larger bird and quite different kinda stuck my foot in my mouth and crossed the 2 up! They are quite different!!! xx Mm
My first photo was the Albratross and this is the Seagull! Oops!
Thank you Nyack.....! That was awesome information. You did a wonderful job. And for all that you do my friend, you are allowed to do Blooper's every now and then.
And I do blooper's on a regular basis Jon! lol...
there really is no point in going through all this and signing petition if we dont even know what we are signing for, is my opinion.
And trust me- I have signed decieving petitions with alll the trolls around.,