Thursday, January 6, 2011

Bird Expert Tells Us: No Big Deal

Gary Graves, bird curator at the Smithsonian, tells us that the bird die-offs are nothing to worry about.
The timing of the deaths seem curious, but, according to one expert, reports of their significance have been greatly exaggerated.
An interesting comment: "...reports of their significance ...greatly exaggerated." In other words, those of us who put any kind of meaning onto these bird and fish deaths since the end of December 2010 and continuing, are being silly. Note the subjective interpretation factor here; no denying it's happening, but any concern attached is unwarranted.

Continuing with this tactic, Graves (and that's an interesting Fortean name-game observation; "graves", deaths, burials, carcases, ...) justifies the madness with the comment that blackbirds are annoying:
When Graves first heard about the blackbird deaths, he didn’t think much of it. He still doesn’t. “The blackbirds are considered a nuisance, especially in the south where large winter roosts occur,” said Graves,
Not many would disagree with that: starlings are an abhorrence (and I'm an avid bird and animal lover) but the implication here is that the deaths are actually a welcome thing, a good thing, since blackbirds of various varieties are "a nuisance." "There's a pattern," Graves acknowledges, but it's "just coincidence." And of course he calls some of the speculations "really sublimely ridiculous,":
Theories range from “the really sublimely ridiculous,” like flying saucers and top-secret government weapons..
While I don't agree that "flying saucers" is "sublimely ridiculous" I understand the dismissal of such an idea. Okay, maybe it is pretty ridiculous; not because there aren't aliens afoot, but because, well, that's another topic entirely. What aliens would want with birds and fish all of a sudden; doesn't make sense. We're not living inside an episode of V. Use of the term "flying saucer" frames the entire subject of UFOS and puts it in a trivialized and marginalised realm. In the kook basket, not worth anyone's time. In that same breath, is the "top-secret government weapons" as if that, too, is within the "flying saucer" kook bin. That latter is interesting; weapons technology is not mad-eyed insane theory, and deflection from considering the idea is intentional.

Smithsonian Bird Curator: Beebe, Arkansas Die Off Is Not Such A Big Deal | Around The Mall

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