Sunday, November 15, 2020



The Rare Vertebrates of Connecticut, out of print for 40 years and not otherwise available on the internet, is now accessible via Bird Conservation Research, Inc.  Much has changed since this volume was released.  Species thought to be rare in the 1970s, like the Cooper's Hawk, Pine Warbler, Yellow-bellied Sapsucker and Red-bellied Woodpecker, have undergone explosive population growth and are now regular Connecticut residents.  Others, like the Ruffed Grouse and White-throated Sparrow, have declined and still others, like the Common Raven, had yet to colonize the state. 

Thinking concerning the meaning of terms like State rare and State endangered has, as a consequence, evolved  (see, for example, this).  An important conclusion to be drawn from the extent of population change observed over time is that wildlife communities are dynamic rather than static assemblages (see this).  This conclusion affects how conservation concern is evaluated and requires us to develop a more sophisticated notion of how we view rarity at the local level. See this page and click on the PowerPoint presentation Global vs. Local Perspective on Endangerment for a more-in-depth analysis of this issue.   

The Rare Vertebrates of Connecticut provides us with a useful perspective on some of the earliest thinking concerning conservation of rare species at the local level.  It is available here.


Saturday, February 22, 2020


Arts and Academic Publishing LLC invites authors to submit their book manuscripts for publication.  Authors do not need to submit through an agent, they incur no publication expenses and they receive royalties for books sold.  A complete compilation of author instructions may be found here.  We seek peer reviewed and copy edited manuscripts that are ready for layout and publication, although we offer review and editing services for those who need them.  Our fields of interest are scholarly works in any discipline and substantive literary works.

In writing (and speaking, for that matter), use precise, concise, original language.  Do not use jargon in place of plain language.  Avoid  such common grammatical weaknesses as misuse of reflexive pronouns, use of trite words and use of expressions with origins in bureaucracies.  Bureaucratic language adds little other than superfluous words to sentences, it often replaces clear language with obtuse constructions and, in some cases, it is grammatically incorrect.

Examples of overused language include:

With that being said
With that said
That being said
That said
Having said that
Going forward
Moving forward
In regards to
Here's the thing

Thursday, January 16, 2020


Everyone's been sharing this link with me:…/hc-hm-birds-connecticut-in-declin…
It is a fine article, but as I pointed out to the author, like most everything in nature the situation is much, much more complicated than simply declines of bird species. From our work at Yale Forest, we know that Connecticut bird communities are extremely dynamic, with more that 50% turnover in 35 years and population increases actually outpacing decreases- climate change, habitat change, species moving into new habitats, competition, etc. etc. all appear to play roles. The graph shows Yale Forest population increases vs. decreases for species whose continental populations are (1) increasing, (2) decreasing and (3) stable. We will have an article out soon...