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The Audubon Nature of a Few Great Cities...

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Happy Friday.

San Francisco

THE BIRD: Wild parrots

THE ISSUE: the liability of two rotting Monterey cyprusses on Telegraph Hill

THE ADVOCATE: Mark Bittner, made the documentary & threw himself in front of the chainsaws

paleNew York

THE BIRD: The red-tailed hawk; specifically, Pale Male & Lola

THE ISSUE: Upward mobility; when PM decided to nest in an UES building vs. a tree, it was kind of a big deal.

THE ADVOCATE: Mary Tyler Moore


THE BIRD: Grackles

THE ISSUE: Straight from the magnolia trees & into everyone's business

THE ADVOCATE: Gloria Roemer, a spokeswoman for Harris County Judge Robert Eckels. "If we leave them alone, they leave us alone."

chickencrossLos Angeles

THE BIRD: Chickens

THE ISSUE: They lived under the Vineland Ave. off-ramp on the 101. Discovered in the 70s, their ontology is murky; they became a commute staple until they were ousted by the Dept. of Animal Regulation and relocated to Simi Valley. Now they're more of an urban legend, though sightings persist.

THE ADVOCATE: Steve Harvey


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Ian Hitchcock/Getty Images
Can’t See the Eclipse in Person? Watch NASA’s 360° Live Stream
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Ian Hitchcock/Getty Images

Depending on where you live, the historic eclipse on August 21 might not look all that impressive from your vantage point. You may be far away from the path of totality, or stuck with heartbreakingly cloudy weather. Maybe you forgot to get your eclipse glasses before they sold out, or can't get away from your desk in the middle of the day.

But fear not. NASA has you covered. The space agency is live streaming a spectacular 4K-resolution 360° live video of the celestial phenomenon on Facebook. The livestream started at 12 p.m. Eastern Time and includes commentary from NASA experts based in South Carolina. It will run until about 4:15 ET.

You can watch it below, on NASA's Facebook page, or on the Facebook video app.

Cephalopod Fossil Sketch in Australia Can Be Seen From Space

Australia is home to some of the most singular creatures alive today, but a new piece of outdoor art pays homage to an organism that last inhabited the continent 65 million years ago. As the Townsville Bulletin reports, an etching of a prehistoric ammonite has appeared in a barren field in Queensland.

Ammonites are the ancestors of the cephalopods that currently populate the world’s oceans. They had sharp beaks, dexterous tentacles, and spiraling shells that could grow more than 3 feet in diameter. The inland sea where the ammonites once thrived has since dried up, leaving only fossils as evidence of their existence. The newly plowed dirt mural acts as a larger-than-life reminder of the ancient animals.

To make a drawing big enough to be seen from space, mathematician David Kennedy plotted the image into a path consisting of more than 600 “way points.” Then, using a former War World II airfield as his canvas, the property’s owner Rob Ievers plowed the massive 1230-foot-by-820-foot artwork into the ground with his tractor.

The project was funded by Soil Science Australia, an organization that uses soil art to raise awareness of the importance of farming. The sketch doubles as a paleotourist attraction for the local area, which is home to Australia's "dinosaur trail" of museums and other fossil-related attractions. But to see the craftsmanship in all its glory, visitors will need to find a way to view it from above.

[h/t Townsville Bulletin]


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