Brown Thrasher

The Brown Thrasher (Toxostoma rufum) is a bird in the Mimidae family of passerine (songbirds) such as mockingbirds, that mimic other birds. 

The Brown Thrasher is reddish-brown with dark streaks. Its underparts are white or buff-coloured with dark streaks. It has a teardrop shape on its chest. It has a long, rounded rufous (reddish) tail with pale corners. Its eyes are bright yellow. Its beak is brown, long, and curved downward. The male and the female look similar. 

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Comma Butterfly

The Comma Butterfly (Polygonia c-album) is an insect in the Nymphalidae family of butterflies. It is also known as the Anglewing, due to its angular wings. 

The Comma Butterfly is orange on the upperside of its wings with dark-brown to black markings and light spots on the edge. It has angular notches on the edges of its forewings (front wings). The underside is marbled brown. The hind wings (back wings) have a white spot in the shape of the letter C. It can look like fallen leaves when resting, which confuses its predators. It is a strong flier.

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Globe Skimmer Dragonfly

The Globe Skimmer Dragonfly (Pantala flavescens) is an insect in the Libellulidae family of dragonflies. It is also known as the Globe Wanderer or the Wandering Glider. 

The Globe Skimmer has a long, cylindrical body, two pairs of translucent wings, and a head with large eyes. The adult male has a reddish-yellow abdomen and the female has a yellow abdomen. It has a yellowish head. Its legs are black.

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Marmalade Fly

The Marmalade Fly (Episyrphus balteatus) is a small insect in the Syrphidae family of hoverflies. It is also known as the Marmalade Hoverfly. 

The Marmalade Fly is patterned with orange and black bands on the top of its abdomen. The female has dark-orange, light-orange, and black bands. It looks like a wasp, but it is smaller and it does not have a tiny waist. The male has holoptic eyes, which means that the left and right compound eyes touch at the top of its head. The adult has wings. 

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Common Swift

The Common Swift (Apus apus) is a bird in the Apodiformes order. It looks similar to the Barn Swallow and the House Martin, but it is related to the Hummingbird and Treeswift. 

The Common Swift is black-brown, except for a small patch of white or pale-grey on its chin. It has long swept-back, narrow wings that resemble the silhouette of an anchor or a boomerang.  It has a short-forked tail. It has short legs.

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World Migratory Bird Day

World Migratory Bird Day is held annually on the second Saturday in May and the second Saturday in October. In 2020, it will be held on 9-10 May. The 2020 theme for World Migratory Bird Day is ‘Birds Connect Our World.’

World Migratory Bird Day (WMBD) aims to raise awareness of the need to conserve migratory birds and their habitats. 

The 2020 theme of ‘Birds Connect Our World’ focuses on the three flyways (three main migratory routes in the world). WMBD aims to increase awareness about general and specific threats that birds are facing when they migrate.

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CREATURE FEATURE: Barred Catfish

The Barred Catfish (Pseudoplatystoma fasciatum) is a large freshwater fish in the Pimelodidae family of long-whiskered catfish. It is also called the Barred Sorubim. It is related to the Tiger Shovelnose Catfish. 

The Barred Catfish is dark-grey with black loop-like stripes and spots. Its head is depressed with a wide mouth and long whiskers, called barbels. Its eyes and teeth are small. 

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Pallas’s Gull

The Pallas’s Gull (Ichthyaetus ichthyaetus) is a sea bird in the seagull family. It is also known as the Great Black-Headed Gull.

The Pallas’s Gull is white with a black head. It has grey wings and a grey back, with white ‘mirrors’ at the wing tips. Its legs are yellow, with webbed feet. Its beak is orange-yellow with a red tip. Its eyes are small and dark.

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Swan Goose

The Swan Goose (Anser cygnoides) is a large bird with a long neck. 

The Swan Goose has greyish-brown upperparts, a maroon cap, and maroon at the back of its neck. Its underwing is black. It has a thin, white stripe surrounding the base of its beak. Its belly and sides are pale with darker streaks. Its beak is black, and its legs and feet are orange. It has maroon-brown eyes. The male and the female look similar, but the male has a longer beak and neck.

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Eurasian Wigeon

The Eurasian Wigeon (Mareca penelope or Anas penelope) is a bird in the Mareca genus of dabbling ducks. It is also spelled Widgeon. 

The male Eurasian Wigeon has grey feathers on its back and sides during the breeding season, with a black tail, a dark-green speculum, and a white patch on its upper wings. It has a pink chest, white belly, and a chestnut-coloured head with a cream-coloured crown. In the non-breeding season, the male and the female look similar. 

The female Eurasian Wigeon is light brown with a paler head and white feathers on its underwing. Sometimes, the female has a rufous (red-brown) body with a redder head or a grey body with a grey head.

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Finnish Forest Reindeer

The Finnish Forest Reindeer (Rangifer tarandus fennicus) is a large ungulate (hoofed) mammal in the deer family. It is a sub-species of the Reindeer (Rangifer tarandus). It is also known as the European Forest Reindeer. It is an artiodactyl because it has cloven (split) hooves.

The Finnish Forest Reindeer has dark-brown to light-brown fur. Its coat has two layers of fur – a thick woolly undercoat and a longer-haired overcoat. It has long legs with wide, crescent-shaped, cloven hooves for walking across deep snow. It has white hair around its short tail. 

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European Bison

The European Bison (Bison bonasus) is an artiodactyl ungulate (split, cloven hoofed) mammal in the bovine (cattle) family. It is a bisonid. It is also known as the Wisent and the European Wood Bison. 

The European Bison has a stocky body with a massive head. It is broad and muscular. It has a shaggy dark-brown coat of fur. Both the male and female have horns that point forward, with a blunted, rounded tip. 

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