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FLEFF Intern Voices

The Finger Lakes Environmental Film Festival from the interns' point of view

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Posted by Rachael Lewis-Krisky at 11:12PM   |  3 comments
Parotia Bird

They squawk to their friends. They hop across the forest floor. They puff their feathers to attract a mate.

The birds shown in the Cornell Lab of Ornithology showcase were so comical they could have been cartoon characters. In How Nature Works: Barrier Island Foraging Strategies FLEFF goers got the inside close-up look of birds who feed in Louisiana’s barrier islands. The Long-billed Curlew has an extremely long down-curved bill that allows it to shove its head into the sand and impressively pull out a crab. I’m glad I don’t have to eat my dinner like that.

Another oddball bird was the Piping Plover. These little white-feathered rascals do what the narrator described as a run-stop-run survey method. They’ll run a couple feet, freeze, dig their stout orange beaks into the ground for prey, and repeat – a little dance for a little creature.

The Cornell Lab of Ornithology also featured beautifully majestic yet odd and bizarre birds in Paradise Found. One bird’s appearance may as well have been taken from an alien comic book. The male version of the Parotia puffs out its black feathers into a skirt as it dances, bobs and twirls to attract a lady. It’s gold and teal neck feathers display as if they are its version of a flashy bow tie.

After the screening as I ate an afternoon sandwich at College Town Bagels, I heard a small tweet from above in a tree. I looked up and starred, realizing I will probably never look at birds the same way again. 


I really like the way you start and end your post. I remember that bird tweet when we were having early dinner outside of CTB. We live in this cement forest. We feel less and less attached to the nature. We stop feeling appreciative for those little things and moments nature offers. I am really glad that I went to this screening. Those short films have really made me rethink about our relationship to the nature.

From the description, it sounds like it was a screening I shouldn't have missed.
I was able to speak to one of the directors of the Lab of Ornithology before the screening, and he said the films would show how birds' change in behaviors reveal changes in our own environment.

Was there any discussion about climate change? What are the birds telling us?

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