[Tweeters] Time and birds
ucd880 at comcast.net
Mon May 23 06:50:37 PDT 2022
Many (most?) birds time migration and nesting to day length. As such, changes in bud-out and insect production may change with temperature change but the sun's timing isn't changed. One can hope that the birds that have the genetics to nest earlier will be successful and adapt; and experiment in evolution.
Board of Directors, Ecologists Without Borders http://ecowb.org/
ucd880 at comcast.net
> On 05/23/2022 5:30 AM Steve Hampton <stevechampton at gmail.com> wrote:
> To add to Martha's contribution, there's currently a lot of research into potential ecological/phenological mismatches due to climate change. In short-- a timing problem.
> Some birds (e.g. chickadees, warblers, flycatchers, etc) need thousands of caterpillars to fledge a single nest. They time their nesting to coincide with the emergence of this food source.
> With climate change, we are seeing budding and emergence of bugs 1 to 4 weeks earlier; they respond to weather. Resident birds (e.g. our local chickadees) have shown some ability to adapt and hurry up their nesting timing, but long-distance migrants (e.g. warblers and flycatchers coming from Central America) seem to be hard-wired by day-length. They're arriving only a few days earlier, with some trying to nest quickly once they arrive and realize they are behind schedule, but in general they are not adapting fast enough. Fortunately, most species are still nesting within the period of caterpillar abundance, but some (e.g. European Pied Flycatchers nesting in oaks in northern Europe) are suffering nest failures. They are missing the caterpillar boom. That's a timing problem for which they are not prepared.
> On Sun, May 22, 2022 at 2:42 PM Martha Jordan <mj.cygnus at gmail.com mailto:mj.cygnus at gmail.com > wrote:
> > > So timely to think only about human time:
> > Humans constructed "clock time" as we now know it, likely early Eygptians and later Europeans with clocks with hands. Early humans ran on the same time as all other life....sun, moon, pull of earth, etc. Then, we constructed this construct of time as communication: meet me at 4 pm (so a clock was needed to make sure we all knew when 4 pm was), 24 hour time being a day. The sundial may have been the first, but the 24 hour clock with numbers and hands really solidified clock time as time (purely in our human minds). Clock time also comes with stressors in human lives. Now we can be early, or late, or miss a deadline, an event, a celebration.
> > Other animals and life forms have no use for this, Thus, what is time. I observe all types of animals knowing what time it is: a dog who starts to let you know it is feeding time at 5:30pm everyday (it did not look at a clock and daylight savings time really screws them up like it does us). I have experienced captive swans do this same type of thing.
> > The reality is, animals do tell time, as the length of the day goes by and then they are aware that something should happen. For our dogs it may be dinner, a walk, you need to get out of bed, etc. That is certainly time awareness. Yet, they know not of a clock. Birds come to my bird feeder at about the same time everyday when they know it will have been filled.
> > Migration is certainly about time awareness. Yet there is no clock to tell them this. Birds know how to read the sun, daylight length, temperature, and such, all combining to keep, for example, the snow geese here an extra few weeks this year. How do they know this.....awareness of all their surroundings which is how we humans lived before someone invented the clock.
> > We, humans, used all our senses to tell "time" before clocks were invented; to more closely regulate and make time a commonality point, less pinpoint accurate but functionally more liveable. Clock time has created a major stress in our lives. Suddenly we became early or late or on time. Suddenly we had schedules and timeframes and deadlines or daylight savings time.. Thankfully, animals do not have this pre knowledge of what it means to miss the timeframe or miss a deadline. It is more about life or death to wild animals when they miss the deadline. We take care of our domestic critters on a clock time frame for some folks, and on the farm clock for others, or fill in time frame you want. The wild animals continue to live "off the clock time" yet they absolutely live with a time frame.
> > Just because a bird does not use a 24 hour clock of human construct, does not mean they do not have a keen sense of time.
> > Indeed, animals have a great sense of time and timing.
> > Respectfully,
> > Martha Jordan
> > Everett, WA
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> Steve Hampton
> Port Townsend, WA (qatáy)
> Tweeters mailing list
> Tweeters at u.washington.edu
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