nothing like a mud bath to get the wrinkles out (by ucumari photography)
HOUSTON AUDUBON BEAK OF THE WEEK:
White-eyed Vireo (Vireo griseus)
A small and secretive bird of shrubby areas of the eastern and southern United States, the White-eyed Vireo is more noticeable for its explosive song than its looks. Its song is loud, short, rapid, and harsh, with a sharp ‘chick’ at beginning and end. It has been described as sounding like “chick-ah-per-weeoo-chick”. This bird was recently heard at the Sims Bayou Urban Nature Center.
In addition to its bright white eyes, the combination of wingbars, yellow spectacles, and white throat differentiates it from any other similar-sized species. It should be noted that immature birds have dark eyes, but develop a white iris after their first winter.
While most birds are currently heading to their wintering grounds which range from the extreme southeastern United States through Central America to Guatemala and Cuba, some will linger into December and occasionally overwinter.
(via: Houston Audubon)
Cruising the Reef by joeholden Caribbean Reef Shark, Tiger Beach
A gold dust day gecko (Phelsuma laticauda) licks nectar from a bird of paradise flower on the island of Hawaii (where they were introduced. they are originally from Madagascar).
photo: Wikimedia, Brocken Inaglory
Red-faced Malkoha - Phaenicophaeus pyrrhocephalus
This incontrovertibly distinctive bird is Phaenicophaeus pyrrhocephalus (Cuculiformes - Cuculidae), a Vulnerable species endemic to Sri Lanka found in the remaining intact rainforests of the wet zone, and a few scattered riverine forests of the intermediate and dry zones.
The majestic flop……
Name: Sinocalliopteryx gigas
Name Meaning: Giant Chinese Beautiful Feather
First Described: 2007
Described By: Ji et al
Classification: Dinosauria, Saurischia, Theropoda, Neotheropoda, Averostra, Tetanurae, Orionides, Avetheropoda, Coelurosauria, Tyrannoraptora, Compsognathidae
Sinocalliopteryx was a compsognathid dinosaur from the Barremian to Aptian ages of the Early Cretaceous, about 124.6 million years ago. It was found in the Yixian Formation of Liaoning, China, and is known from a complete and well preserved specimen. It was about 2.37 meters long and a little less than a meter high. It was a bipedal predator, with an elongated head and pointed snout, and decidedly had protofeathers as shown in its fossil remains. It was found with the partial leg of a dromaeosaurid in its abdominal cavity, meaning that it probably ate this dromaeosaurid. Given its large size for a compsognathid, this is not out of the question. It was probably an agile, active and fierce predator, feeding on smaller dinosaurs, mammals, and lizards. The dromaeosaurid in question has been identified as Sinornithosaurus, about 1.2 meters long. There were also irregularly shaped stones within the abodmen, which could have been gastroliths, such as those found in other theropods, in order to aid in digestion. It probably had a high, warm-blooded metabolism.
Shout out goes to athospursuit!