Bird Research and
Conservation News in BirdWatch Canada
11 July 2014
– The Summer 2014 edition of BirdWatch Canada (No. 68)
includes a reflection on the centennial of the Passenger Pigeon’s
extinction, national results from the 114th Christmas Bird Count in
Canada, reports from Bird Studies Canada’s Prairie Marsh Monitoring
Program and the Important Bird Areas program in British Columbia, and
Visit our website to view the table of contents, and to read a
special report on the debate over whether widely-used neonicotinoid
pesticides are a serious threat to bird health.
Published four times a year by Bird Studies Canada, BirdWatch
Canada reports the latest results from our programs, and includes
topical feature articles about the world of birds. By donating as little
as CDN $35 annually, BSC members and supporters provide valuable funding
for bird research and conservation, and receive quarterly issues of our
magazine, free participation in any of our Citizen Science programs, and
a charitable tax receipt for the full amount of the contribution. Please
donate today! Make an
membership donation or call us toll-free at 1-888-448-2473.
Research Highlighted in New
10 July 2014
– The latest issue of Avian Conservation and Ecology (Volume 9,
Issue 1) is now online. Visit the journal’s website to explore the
table of contents.
The issue features research papers on a wide range of topics, including
results of a study that explored how well regional and national Breeding
Bird Survey trends predicted songbird population trends at an intact
boreal study site in the Northwest Territories, Canada.
Avian Conservation and Ecology is an open-access, fully
electronic scientific journal, sponsored by the Society of Canadian
Ornithologists and Bird Studies Canada.
2014 AOU / COS / SCO Meeting
10 July 2014
– The 2014 joint meeting of the American Ornithologists’ Union, the
Cooper Ornithological Society, and the Society of Canadian
Ornithologists will take place September 23-27 in Estes Park, Colorado.
The meeting will feature five days of workshops, contributed scientific
papers, posters, and invited speakers. Visit the
for details. Regular registration will be accepted until the end of
August, but there’s a discounted fee if you sign up before Tuesday, July
15, the early registration deadline.
What’s in a (Species) Name?
Common Gallinule Photo: Ron Ridout
25 June 2014
– Standardized scientific names for biological species have been in use
for nearly 300 years, but these names are not precise descriptors of the
natural world. As global biodiversity databases grow, so do problems
arising from taxonomic revisions (meaning a name’s definition changes
over time). To solve this issue of imprecision in communicating with
their colleagues, some scientists use taxonomic concepts, which pair
each use of a scientific name with a citation to a source that defines a
particular meaning for it.
A new article published in the open-access journal ZooKeys
explains how Avibase, an
extensive online global bird database created and managed by Bird
Studies Canada’s Senior Scientist Dr. Denis Lepage, successfully
addresses issues related to this multiplicity of meanings, and organizes
scientific names and their definitions on an unprecedented scale.
Science Daily for a related story, or read the full paper
“Avibase: A database system for managing and organizing taxonomic
concepts” by Denis Lepage, Gaurav Vaidya, and Robert
Guralnick on the ZooKeys website.
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