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A Musical Field Guide To National Bird Day

Today is National Bird Day, and we are all gonna celebrate. Every year bird enthusiasts pick this day to promote bird watching, XTREME bird watching, bird adoption, and just plain ol' loving the unholy hell out of birds. All kidding aside, the holiday is dedicated to raising awareness about the fact that almost 12 percent of the world's birds may face extinction in the next century, especially parrots.

To get into the spirit of the holiday, Rocks Off has written a guide to music industry avians in order that you may be able to spot these elusive creatures.

THE BJORK SWAN

This species of swan migrated to North America from Iceland in the 1980s, and spread slowly but surely until it became quite common. The swan is known for its beautiful, if somewhat bizarre song. It mostly inhabits awards shows and independent film soundtracks, and should not under any circumstances be provoked.

When it or its young is threatened, the Bjork Swan has been known to peck the eyeballs straight from the sockets of its offenders. The Swan's egg doubles as a change purse.

BIRD OF (THE PHANTOM OF THE) PARADISE
A Musical Field Guide To National Bird Day

Sadly, this species is all but extinct due to the destruction of its natural habitat. The birds lay their eggs only in cult '70s musicals, which were mostly bulldozed during the Reagan administration in the '80s. Reports of isolated flocks are still reported in small video stores, but eyewitness accounts are becoming increasingly rare.

Those who do catch a glimpse of the birds will note the sleek, black leather and silver metallic plumage in the males, or the almost total absence of feathers save across the breast and at the genitals of the females. Paul Williams has commercially released recordings of the birds' songs, which are still available.

THE MORRIS DAY BIRD

Science hasn't been able to exactly classify the Morris Day Bird. Some claim it's a kind of vulture, whereas others believe it is descended from peacocks. The matter of its true genetic heritage is hampered by the species itself, since it only reproduces by stealing other birds' girlfriends.

It accomplishes this seduction through meticulously groomed plumage - often aided by the Jerome Magpie in a clear case of inter-species symbiosis - and also through an elaborate mating dance. The Morris Day Bird is listed as threatened rather than endangered, and makes it's home in purple rain forests.

  LAMBERT'S BUDGIE

A Musical Field Guide To National Bird Day
Faith Silva

Genetic tinkering with the Leif Garret Parakeet by ABC scientists resulted in a bird whose song was perfectly pitched, but tended towards annoying repetition. Initially viewed as a pleasant pet for many Americans, the Lambert's Budgie has since become an invasive species, endangering the lives of many other songbirds through overpopulation. The bird is common all over America and Europe, and has no natural predators. It makes its nest in the souls of people who were once really into Clay Aiken.

THE ST. LOUIS POOPING PIGEON
A Musical Field Guide To National Bird Day
Photo illustration by John Seaborn Gray

All pigeons are known for their ability to drop white presents on those who pass under them, but the St. Louis Pooping Pigeon is remarkable for its selectivity and accuracy. The bird will wait days, sometimes even a week to move its bowels until it finds the open mouth of a King of Leon.

When Kings of Leon are scarce, the bird will sometimes consent to poop on the tour bus of My Chemical Romance, or on Ke(Dollar Sign)ha - who apparently hasn't noticed. A small but vocal movement on Facebook has started a petition to have the bald eagle retired as the national symbol, and the St. Louis Pooping Pigeon put in its place.

Jef With One F is the author of The Bible Spelled Backwards Does Not Change the Fact That You Cannot Kill David Arquette and Other Things I Learned In the Black Math Experiment, available now.

Follow Rocks Off on Facebook and on Twitter at @HPRocksOff.


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