The many fuzzy and feathery dinosaurs that have been discovered reveal one of the most magnificent evolutionary transformations in the history of life
August 26, 2011 | By Brian Switek
After an oil spill, should people put in the time and effort to clean up wildlife, or would it be better to just let the animals die?
August 23, 2011 | By Sarah Zielinski
Biologists scale city trees to bag a surprisingly urban species, the Cooper's Hawk
August 23, 2011 | By Eric Wagner
The ties between same-sex couples can be just as strong as those in heterosexual birds
August 18, 2011 | By Sarah Zielinski
Male houbara bustards pay a steep price for wooing the ladies
August 12, 2011 | By Sarah Zielinski
Hummingbirds, attacking bears, ancient hominids and other news updates in wildlife research
August 2011 | By T.A. Frail, Megan Gambino, Laura Helmuth, Erin Wayman and Sarah Zielinski
Most of us never come in contact with a deadly predator, but there are still enough encounters to remind us that humans are not always the top of the food web
July 22, 2011 | By Sarah Zielinski
Scientists have found that predator species trade off between prey availability and water temperature in their travels
July 21, 2011 | By Sarah Zielinski
I was certain that the bird's plumage had to have been faked, but all the photographer did was darken the background. Those feathers were real
July 15, 2011 | By Sarah Zielinski
By fiddling with the genetic toggles of birds, scientists might be able to reverse-engineer a dinosaurian creature
June 13, 2011 | By Brian Switek
The bar-headed goose spends its winters at sea level in India and its summers in central Asia
June 01, 2011 | By Sarah Zielinski
Snails, marmots, condors and coral reef are among the many species on the continent that are close to extinction
May 19, 2011 | By Megan Gambino, Erin Wayman and Sarah Zielinski
Last year during the Gulf oil spill, as I watched reports about dead birds and talked with scientists about what might happen to the local ecosystems, I wondered how we might punish the perpetrators of such an ecological crime. BP will eventually pay some fine, based partially on the number of wild...
April 26, 2011 | By Sarah Zielinski
Feathers, air sacs, nesting behavior—the earliest birds owed a lot to their dinosaurian ancestors. The first birds also inherited a strong sense of smell.Modern birds have not been thought of as excellent scent-detectors, save for some super-smellers such as turkey vultures, which detect the scent ...
April 14, 2011 | By Brian Switek
The Smithsonian's noted bird sleuth, Carla Dove, eyes smelly globs to identify victims in Florida
April 2011 | By Arcynta Ali Childs
Rare cranes have flourished in the world's unlikeliest sanctuary, the heavily mined demilitarized zone between North and South Korea
April 2011 | By Eric Wagner
Fairy-wrens, wasps, and a nearly 3,000 year old big toe
April 2011 | By T.A. Frail, Megan Gambino, Laura Helmuth, Jesse Rhodes and Sarah Zielinski
Recently, while perusing the shelves of my bird-crazy colleague Laura, I came across "Winged Wonders: A Celebration of Birds in Human History," by Peter Watkins and Jonathan Stockland. The book is full of examples of how birds can be found in art and language, but what particularly intrigued me was...
March 29, 2011 | By Sarah Zielinski
If you held a short race between a silver Y moth and a European songbird, the bird would win hands down. These birds, such as warblers, thrushes and flycatchers, can fly about three times as fast as the silver Y moth. But when it comes to long-distance migration, from northern Europe to the Mediter...
March 22, 2011 | By Sarah Zielinski
Contrary to what Laura might have implied yesterday, I'm not anti-bird. And to prove it, I present to you one of the finalists in the Natural World category of Smithsonian magazine's 8th Annual Photo Contest. The photographer, Ho Sung Wee, captured this moment, titled "Mother's Love," in an orchard...
March 18, 2011 | By Sarah Zielinski