Download Birds of the Great Basin: a natural history by Fred A. Ryser PDF

By Fred A. Ryser

Birds have constantly been of willing curiosity to guy, when you consider that their attractiveness, track and engaging behaviour are conspicuously displayed and will be seen and heard through even the main informal observer. This booklet, the results of over thirty years of analysis, is the main finished ever released at the different poultry lifetime of the nice Basin.

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Butterflies, creatures of the sunlight, must immediately seek the warmth of the ground when the sun disappears behind clouds, or cold paralysis soon sets in. A few adult poikilotherms survive long periods of thermal stress, such as winter, by inactivity in some sheltered microclimate. Most adult poikilotherms die during these periods, relying on some resistant stage in the species' life history, such as eggs or pupae, to renew the population when the mild seasons of the year return. Because they can regulate their body temperatures, homeotherms are active the day and year around even in temperate and polar regions.

An occasional avalanche may occur in the higher mountains, such as the Ruby Mountains. In the valleys the annual precipitation is very low. Much of the Great Basin Desert receives only five to ten inches of annual precipitation; the Walker Lake depression in Nevada and the salt desert near Wendover, Utah, average less than five inches a year. The eastern end of the Great Basin is wetter, and at certain locales here the annual precipitation may average over fifteen inches. Fresh water is a limited commodity in the Great Basin.

During the years of 1965, 1966, and 1967, Jack and I systematically retraced, after the lapse of one hundred years, the footsteps of the great nineteenth-century ornithologist, Robert Ridgway, along the lower reaches of the Truckee River below the Big Bend. I have spent a considerable amount of time either birding or working on bird problems with some of my graduate students-particularly David Salter, Tom Burns, Ron Panik, John Gustafson, Verne Woodbury, and David Worley. In addition, I have exchanged information about Great Basin birds or birded with good people like Ingrid Hanf, Bob and Jessie Alves, John Kartesz, Dick Ankers, Ella Knoll, Al Knorr, John Biewener, Chuck Lawson, Bill Mewaldt, Gary Herron, and others.

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