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I hope I don't get myself in hot water here...  but once in a while, I just have that NEED to ramble on about something that doens't quite fit anywhere on the forums...  Part of me thinks I could get in trouble... part of me think that maybe if I put some other topical posts out there someone will finally create appropriate places for them???  I can dream I guess...  So, I just typed something up to a listerv i'm a part of and I think I'll get better discussion for it here. 🙂  I find it interesting enough anyway... here it is...

Sort of a random musing on the names of birds. I heard someone today mention "Canadian" geese. I didn't say anything. He knew the word "birding" so I was a little surprised. But later on I got thinking about it. It's funny, to me, that sometimes birders make a big deal when it's said incorrectly. Reminds me of some of my grammar snob friends on Facebook.

But as I thought about that bird, I started to confuse myself. Why is it "Canada" in the first place? We don't have "America" birds. We have American. American goldfinch, coot, woodcock, wigeon, black duck, flamingo, white pelican, bittern, avocet, oystercatcher, golden-plover, three-toed woodpecker, kestrel, crow, dipper, robin, pipit, redstart, tree-sparrow... then we have eurasian and european and asian birds. 
We don't say America ____ or Europe _____ or Asia _____. 
So why are the Canada goose and warbler NOT Canadian? Seems that most of the names having to do with location are descriptive and Canadian would make sense. If we're talking about an American bird we say it that way. And with Canada, if we were talking about their money we'd say Canadian money.

Right or wrong I think that, for many people, it's what sounds right to them. Reminds me of when we first got an Aldi in Siloam Springs. A LOT of people I know would mention going to "Aldis."  That just flows better somehow... even though nobody says they're going to "walmarts." 
Words are funny I guess. Now back to your regularly scheduled program......

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not unless you can OD on chocolate.  I don't drink caffeinated beverages.  I think it's a good question to ponder.

Someone on the listserv mentioned that we do have Carolina chickadees and such... but then we also have Mexican birds, not Mexico birds. 
Can we really blame people for saying Canadian?

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15 hours ago, millipede said:

... part of me think that maybe if I put some other topical posts out there someone will finally create appropriate places for them???  I can dream I guess...

We might as well dream of winning the lottery too. :classic_laugh:  @Administrator sounded committed to adding more forums back in September and mentioned it again in October but nothing has happened yet. I think we're just adding to our own frustration by pursuing this any further. The members have spoken, in more ways than one,  but it doesn't seem like the right people are listening.

 

As for the Canada Goose term, I have to agree with you that it's weird not to use the term Canadian Goose. Being from Canada, and knowing better, I use the term "Canadian Geese" when referring to the plural but use Canada Goose when referring to an individual. It just seems to roll off the tongue better for me that way. Everyone knows what bird(s) I am referring to either way I say it so I never worry about which term I use. 

 

 

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11 hours ago, lonestranger said:

We might as well dream of winning the lottery too.

HA...  don't think I don't dream of that as well. I'm a dreamer. 🙂 
I am picky and it almost hurts to see things laid out the way they are... almost had me going off to make my own site but I don't have a lot of luck populating such things. Besides, I end up just hanging out in the ID section most of the time anyway...  so I'll survive... I think

 

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"American" and  "America" both have three syllables.   "Canadian" has four syllables, one more than "Canada".   So while the adjective is better than the noun (for a descriptive word), "easier to say" trumps that rule.

(When I saw the subject line I thought it was about the White-throated Sparrow.)

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4 hours ago, Leviticus Plews said:

When I saw the subject line I thought it was about the White-throated Sparrow.

is there a story about a white-throated sparrow in Canada? or, something I missed???

(and I have to ask about your username... call me curious.  )

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7 minutes ago, Charlie Spencer said:

or even just 'Goose, eh?'

😛

This makes me want to start another RANDOM topic...  someone can feel free to take the idea and go do that if they want otherwise I'll save it for the next moment I'm bored...  But, a nice conversation on the not so accurate names for birds. Always interesting(as in, kind of uncomfortable) running into non-birders at a local lake describing the "water turkeys." (cormorants.)

10 minutes ago, IvoryBillHope said:

The call is often phonetically described as "Oh sweet Canada".

Somehow I did not know that...  That could be another topic as well. I really, really don't like what many people use for the olive-sided flycatcher... "quick three beers?"  Was that the best people could come up with? Or do some birders just always have alcohol on the mind? It's (yet another topic) interesting how many bird type meetings and events end up happening at a bar or have beer at them. 😕 
anyway... I'm rambling but, that's okay. 🙂

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3 minutes ago, millipede said:

I really, really don't like what many people use for the olive-sided flycatcher... "quick three beers?"  Was that the best people could come up with? Or do some birders just always have alcohol on the mind? It's (yet another topic) interesting how many bird type meetings and events end up happening at a bar or have beer at them. 😕 
anyway... I'm rambling but, that's okay. 🙂

Our local Audubon has a Birds and Beers social event once a month at a bar/restaurant.  🍺

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16 hours ago, millipede said:

😛

This makes me want to start another RANDOM topic...  someone can feel free to take the idea and go do that if they want otherwise I'll save it for the next moment I'm bored...  But, a nice conversation on the not so accurate names for birds. Always interesting(as in, kind of uncomfortable) running into non-birders at a local lake describing the "water turkeys." (cormorants.)

Somehow I did not know that...  That could be another topic as well. I really, really don't like what many people use for the olive-sided flycatcher... "quick three beers?"  Was that the best people could come up with? Or do some birders just always have alcohol on the mind? It's (yet another topic) interesting how many bird type meetings and events end up happening at a bar or have beer at them. 😕 
anyway... I'm rambling but, that's okay. 🙂

Ha! I love the phrase for the Olive-sided, though I thought it was "quick! Free Beer".   As for the white-throated Sparrow:  In the U.S. we refer to the song as "Sweeeet .... Peabody, Peabody, Peabody".  In Canada it's "Sweeet .... Canada, Canada, Canada".

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Alas, I have never been able to hear words or phrases in birds' songs.  Most of these mnemonics are wasted on me.  If nobody had told me the particular call associated with Eastern Phoebe or Carolina Chickadee, I would never have used the phrases 'fee-bee' or 'chik-a-dee' to describe them.

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1 hour ago, Charlie Spencer said:

That's exactly the kind of thing I'm talking about.  No, I don't.  In that particular case, I hear a four-note call but it doesn't sound like any words to me.

Yeah, my wife swears she doesn't hear it.  And whenever I mention it (which is everytime I hear a Goldfinch) she asks me, well what did they say before potato chips were invented? Funny gal!  The point is, of course they don't say "potato chip", but the four note call is expressed in the same rhythm with accent on the second syllable "ta".  If you listen to it that way, soon you'll swear you're hearing "Potato chip".

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