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July 2021

'Spectre' & 'Birds of the West Indies'

Spectre and BondThanks to the THUNDERBALLS,  the unofficial James Bond Picture Archive, I was able to track down this publicity still from "Spectre"  (2015).

The most memorable cinematic reference of this sort, of course, was from "Die Another Day," when Pierce Brosnan's Bond told Halle Berry's Jinx that he was an ornithologist... "I'm just here for the birds."

The archive is excellent.

Bond's Bahama Nuthatch: Distinct and/or Extinct?

Bahama nuthatch ansp skin
The excellent birding blog "10,000 Birds" just posted my short article about the Bahama Nuthatch, recently declared a distinct species by the American Ornithological Society and also feared extinct.

The real James Bond "discovered" the bird 90 years ago. The study skin above is part of the collection at Bond's Academy of Natural Sciences.

You can read it here.

Photo: Special thanks to Matt Halley/Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University.



News about Bond's Bahama Nuthatch

Hayes Bahama Nuthatch  closeupIMG_7607-1200-(2)Late last month, the American Ornithological Society announced that the Bahama Nuthatch -- "discovered by James Bond" -- is now considered a distinct species.

As Mary Wickham Bond (Bond's wife) recounted in To James Bond with Love, Bond collected two specimens of a heretofore undescribed nuthatch in the scrub-pine forests of Grand Bahama:

"The bird is a close relative of the Brown-headed Nuthatch of the southeastern United States, and many ornithologists consider it a distinct species."

Now the American Ornithological Society agrees. You can read the Birds Caribbean account here.

The nuthatch was one of the three Bond birds that I discussed in my talk for the Linnaean Society last February. It's an extraordinary story.

I hope to post more about the AOS decision, the bird and Bond soon.

(Photo above by William K. Hayes.)