Ehrlich refers to fondness of WWCR on page 638 - "produces occ heavy
mortality as listless birds are run over" - see also article on Salt Glands,
which passerines lack. Likewise Forbush, (American Birds, 1953,
p.500 )refers to RECR eating "almost anything that is well salted."
"Drunk" is probably an anthropomorphizing which is incorrect, but apparently
too much salt injested with the road grit can produce dangerous effects in
the birds, just as hooch does with humans.
Seems like I've seen goldfinches slow to take off from a mid road, probably
a similar effect of salt.
----- Original Message -----
From: "William Barnard" <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Friday, February 21, 2003 8:28 AM
> I wanted to look up the reference in Ehrlich. Could not find a
> reference to crossbills and salt. Could you direct me to a page. I
> must confess that I do not buy the "drunk" crossbill explanation and
> wanted to read about it and look for a reference.
> Thanks in advance.