Orchid Growing Training Course
Other structures built by birds are unrelated to either brooding or sleeping, and these might be the oddest of all. Bowerbirds (Ptilonorhynchidae) of Australia and New Guinea are, as a group, uniformly plain-looking birds. This has not, however, been an insurmountable problem for male bower-birds that have turned to constructing elaborately decorated bowers, or secluded retreats, in order to attract and court females through visual stimulation. Gill reports that some researchers seem to have identified an apparent relationship between the absence of showy plumage and the ornate, somewhat fussy constructions fashioned by bower males. It seems that the plainer the plumage of the species, the more exquisitely bedecked the bower. Bowers come in two types simple to complex mats of sticks built around a slender sapling, called maypole bowers, and bizarre tower structures that line the south side of a display court, called avenue bowers. The bowers, and the paths leading up to them, might be...
Kokako pairs breed from November through February, although in years of unusual food abundance that period may begin in October and extend until May. Pairs have been known to raise up to three clutches of chicks in a year's time. The female does most of the nest building, in a tree, up to 100 feet (30 meters) above the ground. The male helps by occasionally bringing in building materials. The nest is well hidden and complex. The female begins with a twig framework, over which she builds a main mass of intertwined moss, lichen, ferns, and orchids, finally ending the construction by lining the bowl with tree fern scales. The female lays up to three pinkish gray eggs, which hatch after an incubation period of eighteen days. The chicks take thirty to forty-five days to fledge, grow their flying feathers, but may remain in the nest, still being fed by the parents, for up to a year. Only the female incubates eggs and cares for the young, although the male feeds the female while she is...
Uniquely within the avian world, promiscuous males clear court areas and skillfully build complex symmetrical structures of sticks, grasses, or other vegetation, and decorate them. Three types of modified courts are cleared and leaf-decorated courts, maypole bowers, and avenue bowers. Maypoles consist of branches and or saplings with accumulations of orchid stems or sticks and an elaborate and decorated discrete mat beneath it. Avenues consist of two parallel walls of sticks or grass stems placed vertically into a foundation that is laid on a ground court that may extend beyond one or both ends of the bower to form a platform.
Fruit-eating a threat to nurseries and agricultural orchards, 75 of some orchid plantations destroyed in Hawaii because of bud and flower damage. Blamed for drastic reduction in populations of native Hawaiian white-eyes (Zosterops spp.) on Mauritius I. Management taken in Hawaii to prevent spread. When southern California populations increased so dramatically that they became a threat to citrus crops, the California Department of Agriculture initiated an eradication program that has been partially successful. Also problematic out of range as it disperses noxious weed seeds.
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