The number of the nation’s documented bird species has increased to 663 this month, including two more endemic species, the Chinese Wild Bird Federation said yesterday.
The federation, which updates its bird species directory every three years, will include this year’s findings — which were published in an annual report released on Friday — in its directory next year, federation environmental research section director Allen Lyu (呂翊維) said.
The federation’s directory is reliable and often referenced by other agencies, as many of its members are important ornithologists and its updates are based on scientific evidence and academic research, and not mere hearsay among bird watchers, Lyu said.
Photo courtesy of Hsinchu City Government
The newly documented birds are the western water rail (Rallus aquaticus korejewi), booted eagle (Hieraaetus pennatus), scarlet minivet (Pericrocotus speciosus fohkiensis), isabelline shrike (Lanius isabellinus isabellinus), blunt-winged warbler (Acrocephalus concinens concinens) and the russet bush warbler (Locustella mandelli melanorhyncha), the federation’s report said.
The federation has collected photographs of the first four species, but only sound recordings of the latter two as they are more elusive, Lyu said, adding that auditory differences are occasionally more helpful to differentiate birds with similar appearances.
Meanwhile, the number of Taiwanese endemic bird species has increased from 27 to 29, with the status of the Taiwanese shortwing (Brachypteryx goodfellowi) and Taiwanese thrush (Turdus niveiceps) being elevated from endemic subspecies, the report said.
Endemic species can be a tourist attraction for bird enthusiasts, who would visit a place just to take pictures of rarely seen birds and enrich their collection of bird images, Lyu said.
Among the 663 species, 15 more bird species can be observed in Kinmen County and eight more in Matsu, mainly because many migratory birds travel from China to the outlying islands, he said.
The increase in the number of documented species does not mean that local environmental conditions have changed for the better, but is more likely the result of advancements in documentation and analytical tools, such as molecular biology techniques and sound spectrum analysis that make taxonomy and nomenclature more precise, Lyu added.
WAR FUNDING: A report by UK and Ukrainian defense analysts said that Taiwanese exports of a compound used in gunpowder have been helping Russia propagate its war About 20 percent of nitrocellulose — a compound used in gunpowder — imported into Russia has been sourced from Taiwan, a joint British-Ukrainian investigative report showed. Nitrocellulose is a key component of smokeless gunpowder, and the EU has banned export of the compound to Russia due to its ongoing war of aggression against Ukraine. The report said that nitrocellulose produced in Taiwan makes its way to Russia by passing through other countries such as Turkey. Only one company, T.N.C. Industrial Co (台硝), was named in the report, which also named China and Germany as key sources of the compound for
A Singaporean social media streamer who goes by the pseudonym Kiaraakitty faked an egg attack by an alleged passerby during a livestream in Kaohsiung on Feb. 9, the city’s police department said on Saturday. The department was responding to the streamer’s claim earlier this month that a stranger had thrown eggs at her during a recent visit to Kaohsiung. Kiaraakitty is known for posting provocative content on livestreaming sites such as Twitch and Discord, as well as other social media platforms such as Instagram, Facebook and YouTube. She also posts on paid adult content Web site OnlyFans. In the video dated Feb. 9,
HOT TOPIC: The Taiwan-born founder of a restaurant in the Japanese city is generally credited with creating the super spicy dish, which was originally intended as a staff meal For Taiwanese, ramen is one of the dishes that most represents Japan; for Japanese, its origins are in China. Then there is “Taiwan ramen,” which can only be found in Japan, but not in Taiwan. It is almost impossible to reach a consensus on the origin of any dish, but a brief look at its history might be helpful. Not many people who are not Japanese question whether ramen is really Japanese. Yet think about it — ramen is often unctuous and rich, unlike most other must-try Japanese foods familiar to foreign visitors to the country, such as sushi and soba noodles. According
ROAD SINKING: The road surface of Qingcheng Street near the intersection with Xingan Street in Taipei’s Songshan District collapsed on Friday at about 9pm Grouting was yesterday used to repair a section of road in Taipei, after work on a construction site caused the surface to partially collapse on Friday evening, the Taipei Construction Management Office said yesterday, adding that nearby buildings were not affected. The road surface of Qingcheng Street near the intersection with Xingan Street in Taipei’s Songshan District (松山) collapsed at about 9pm on Friday. When police arrived they found four cars parked by the roadside tilting to one side. Police estimated the area that had subsided was about 4m by 30m, and was about 1.5m deep. They cordoned off the surrounding area