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Credits & Hotlist - Great Bird Sites

Perusing the web some years ago looking for birds, I was astounded to find that
apart from a few promotions there simply was not enough of good images or information about birds. Sure, plenty of books for sale, lots of come-hither, but no selections of nice pictures with a simple explanations about a given bird. This got me to thinking. If no one else was going to do it for free, well then, I was.
ghorned_owl2.gif (9020 bytes)I know next to nothing about feathered critters, but I like the way they look, sound and behave. When a bird flashes across the sky or hops furtively from tree to tree, I'm apt to say, "Look! - There goes a...brown bird!" I'm sorry to say that since embarking on this project, I'm not much better at bird recognition, but then again I also have difficulty sometimes remembering the names of people I've known for years; I seem to survive.
This site consists of many shameless rip-offs gleaned from various lapsed copyright sources. For overview, I have looked to the National Audubon's classification which seems to me to be a sensible and easy to understand format.
Although I'd love to rip off their bird silhouettes, I'm afraid they might consider suing me (forget it guys I ain't got no money - you'd be wasting your time,) so I've painstakingly set out to create my own set.
Most of the text is copied verbatim from bird books with extinct copyrights, harking back to 1917.
Obviously, they approached the subject of birding quite differently back then - usually with a shotgun at the ready or slung over the shoulder should any tasty eventuality arise. In fact, the commentary can get so involved in the culinary arts that I've sometimes thought the author was thinking more about cooking his subject rather than observing.

I toyed with the idea of doing some heavy editing so as to mollify the more sensitive souls out there, and I have done so from time to time. However, sometimes the authors wax so eloquently on the culinary subject that it is almost sacrilegiously humorous in the light of today's (justifiably) touchy-feely approach to ornithology.
Many of the images that I have placed on this site are interpretations of artwork by such great turn of the Century artists, such as Louis Agassiz Fuertes. I have taken great pains to make the images unrecognizable from the original so as not to step on anybody's toes, even though the copyright has expired. The electronic world also allows me to enhance and bring out colors to a greater degree than that afforded by paint on a reflective surface, and I enjoy creating new backgrounds. Anyway, if I have not done these artists justice, I know I must answer to them in the next world.
The web is above all about cross-referencing, so wherever possible I will try to place other references at the bottom of that particular species page.

The RealAudio sounds are for the most part my own pathetic handiwork; I apologize for their poor quality. In the near future it is my fervent hope to link up with bird song-recording enthusiasts who may find this site on the web, take pity and contribute. The same goes for writers and bird experts who want to improve on the text; please help! All due credit will be given.
Due to the breath taking task of attempting to do hundreds of species that will take may, many years to do, I've taken the liberty linking to other sites when I find a really nice looking bird lurking there.
The site is still very much empty. I shall try and do the most popular birds first, with the occasional lapse whenever I am seduced an exotic looking one that is too good to let go by.


Hotlist - Great Bird Sites

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