Passenger Pigeon Donated to Purdue

A mounted passenger pigeon found at a California jewelry store has been donated to the Purdue University Department of Forestry and Natural Resources. The bird was purchased by Purdue alum Andrew Howe and then flew by plane to Florida before making its final flight to Indiana. Alumni Donation Brings Rare Passenger Pigeon to FNR Collection…… Continue reading Passenger Pigeon Donated to Purdue

A Fossil Passenger Pigeon From Georgia

USNM PAL214770 From the Smithsonian Institution, here’s a passenger pigeon bone, specifically a left humerus (wing). the Smithsonian only identifies it as being from Bartow County, Georgia, but given the collector is attributed to “Lipps et al,” it is likely from Ladd’s Quarry. In the 1960s, Shorter College biology professor Emma Lewis Lipps excavated at…… Continue reading A Fossil Passenger Pigeon From Georgia

The Passenger Pigeon Memorial at the Cincinnati Zoo

Detail of wood door at passenger pigeon memorial, Cincinnati Zoo. Source: TCM

If you know anything about passenger pigeons, you know the last passenger pigeon was named Martha. She died 106 years ago today, on September 1st, 1914. In 1977 the Cincinnati Zoo, where Martha lived and died, created a memorial to the extinct passenger pigeon in one of the few surviving original animal houses. The photo…… Continue reading The Passenger Pigeon Memorial at the Cincinnati Zoo

New Jersey’s State Bird

https://youtu.be/vJgV2FYuuKk In association with the Fine Feathered Friends exhibit, here’s history behind how the Eastern Goldfinch became New Jersey’s official state bird. Anthony Kuser, who is introduced late in the video, was also a sponsor of the search for a surviving passenger pigeon. In 1909, he offered a $300 reward for proof of an undisturbed…… Continue reading New Jersey’s State Bird

Passenger Pigeons on New Hampshire Public Radio

How many is a lot? When you’re talking passenger pigeons, that question is more controversial than you might think. I was fortunate to be able to participate in a discussion of passenger pigeon population numbers for the Outside/In podcast, which is a production of New Hampshire Public Radio. Author Charles Mann was also interviewed because…… Continue reading Passenger Pigeons on New Hampshire Public Radio

Smithsonian Open Access Program: Martha

Martha the Passenger Pigeon. Source: Smithsonian Institution, CC 0. To celebrate the Smithsonian Institution’s formal announcement of its Open Access program, which makes almost 3 million digital images and 3-D models freely available, here’s one of Martha (a.k.a. USNM 223979), the last passenger pigeon. Viewed from this angle, she has a bit of an attitude.

Extinct Birds in Ceramic

The New Jersey State Museum’s Fine Feathered Friends exhibit combines mounted birds from the natural history collection with ceramic birds from the fine arts collection. Two extinct birds, the Carolina Parakeet (Conuropsis carolinensis) and the Passenger Pigeon (Ectopistes migratorius), are immortalized by the Stangl Pottery Company/Fulper Pottery Company of New Jersey. Taxidermied Carolina parakeet, ceramic…… Continue reading Extinct Birds in Ceramic

Another Passenger Pigeon in England

There are two passenger pigeons at Horniman Museum in London. This one is in Birmingham. Even better, the Birmingham Museums have made the image freely available in their Digital Image Resource. Passenger Pigeon, male. 1998Z29. Source: Birmingham Museums, CC0 – Public Domain. Based on its museum accession number (1998Z29) this specimen was re-numbered in the…… Continue reading Another Passenger Pigeon in England

Two Passenger Pigeon Specimens in England

I recently stumbled upon two more passenger pigeon mounts I was unaware of. The Horninam Museum and Gardens in London, England, has two mounted passenger pigeons, a male and a female. Photos of the birds (NH.Z. 1768 and 1769) can be seen at the museum website. The two pigeons are part of a natural history…… Continue reading Two Passenger Pigeon Specimens in England

James Bond’s Passenger Pigeon Egg

Passenger Pigeon egg. Source: Didier Descouens Creative Commons CC BY-SA 3.0 This passenger pigeon egg is from the collection of James Bond, the real ornithologist and inspiration for the fictional spy. Bond worked at the Academy of Natural Sciences in Philadelphia and specialized in Caribbean birds. According to the label, the egg was collected in…… Continue reading James Bond’s Passenger Pigeon Egg