Catholic Birder

Birds have had my attention for over 30 years. God for just a few. Before birds were a passion. Now they are a confirmation. Saint Francis of Assisi, patron of birds, pray for us.

November 10, 2005

Kill the BIRDS!!!!

The folks at National Review's Corner are wargaming again.  No, not Iran or North Korea.  The BIRDS!

Warren Bell learns from other Corner readers that the birds have a mighty airforce.

BIRDS V. HUMANS [ Warren Bell] If it's a numbers game, we're in bad shape. According to most estimates, birds number somewhere between 100 billion and 300 billion. People top out at 6.6 billion. In fact, there are more chickens than there are people. Start eating! As for the question "where are they?" the most common answer is "right above my car." But the only scientific-ish answer is that birds are everywhere (which may be why they scare me) but especially heavily concentrated near the South pole.

I reminded Warren in an email of the human "victory" over the pigeons:

"Even at 300 billion v. 6.5 billion the odds are still in our favor.  Recall the fate of the passenger pigeon, once alleged to be the most populous bird on earth.   Even with five billion in the US, often flying in flocks that reportedly stretched for hundreds of miles, it took little effort to wipe them out completely.  The last flock of around 250,000 was obliterated on a single day in 1896."

His tongue in cheek response: 

"My whole theory revolves around the birds having organizing intelligence, so the idea of wiping them out like the passenger pigeon is going to be much more difficult.  They will hide, because as we all know, they can fly."

Didn't help the pigeons much...


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My little sisters, the birds, much bounden are ye unto God, your Creator, and always in every place ought ye to praise Him, for that He hath given you liberty to fly about everywhere, and hath also given you double and triple rainment; moreover He preserved your seed in the ark of Noah, that your race might not perish out of the world; still more are ye beholden to Him for the element of the air which He hath appointed for you; beyond all this, ye sow not, neither do you reap; and God feedeth you, and giveth you the streams and fountains for your drink; the mountains and valleys for your refuge and the high trees whereon to make your nests; and because ye know not how to spin or sow, God clotheth you, you and your children; wherefore your Creator loveth you much, seeing that He hath bestowed on you so many benefits; and therefore, my little sisters, beware of the sin of ingratitude, and study always to give praises unto God. Saint Francis of Assisi - c 1220

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