A waking of Rooks
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Educated at Blyth Grammar school and Newcastle Polytechnic, Gordon started writing short stories and plays for local radio before writing his first novel, "The Darkness of the Morning" which was an immediate best seller and based on factual events in and around the local mining community in the 19th century. It was translated into Dutch,Russian, Bulgarian and Japanese and was serialized in a Russian magazine as well as appearing as an English reader in Russian schools. He took another factual event as the basis for his second novel, "Lightning in May" which involved the derailing of the "Flying Scotsman" during the general strike of Again, factual happenings involving corruption in local government in the 's produced a semi satirical novel titled "ThePool" Using factual events to spark off fictional happenings proved a popular genre and a further novel, based on a second world war American shipwreck was completed.
The 'Richard Mongomery' is still in the Thames estuary and contains over tons of high explosives. The novel titled "The Action of the Tiger" hit the bookstalls and was shortlisted for a hollywood movie. His short story "The Anniversary. Being a great trad jazz enthusiast, writing novels took second place to playing a clarinet which he bought on the spur of the moment expecting to sell it after 3 months if his standard wasn't as good as Benny Goodman.
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His latest novel "A waking of Rooks" has been likened to "Catcher in the Rye". An unusual tale told through the eyes of an inmate at a mental instituion. This rites of passage story is direct and powerful right up to the amazing suprise finale. About Publish Join Sign In. Readers Benefits of registering Where are my ebooks? Ask it above. An amazing 'rites of passage' novel that is unique in its telling. John Ridgley is in a mental institution. He is advised to write his story as a form of therapy. The male usually initiates courtship, on the ground or in a tree, by bowing several times to the female with drooping wings, at the same time cawing and fanning his tail.
The female may respond by crouching down, arching her back and quivering her wings slightly, or she may take the initiative by lowering her head and wings and erecting her partially spread tail over her back. At this stage, nearby male rooks often mob or attack the mating pair, and in the ensuing struggle, any male that finds himself on top of the female will attempt to copulate with her. She terminates these unwanted advances by exiting the nest and perching nearby.
Nesting in a rookery is always colonial , usually in the very tops of large trees, often on the remnants of the previous year's nest. In hilly regions, rooks may nest in smaller trees or bushes, and exceptionally on chimneys or church spires. Both sexes participate in nest-building, with the male finding most of the materials and the female putting them in place.
Rooks Heath College
The nest is cup-shaped and composed of sticks, consolidated with earth and lined with grasses, moss, roots, dead leaves and straw. Eggs are usually three to five in number sometimes six and occasionally seven and may be laid by the end of March or early April in Britain, but in the harsher conditions of eastern Europe and Russia, it may be early May before the clutch is completed. The eggs average After hatching, the male brings food to the nest while the female broods the young. After ten days, she joins the male in bringing food, which is carried in a throat pouch.
The young are fledged by the 32nd or 33rd day but continue to be fed by the parents for some time thereafter. There is normally a single clutch each year, but there are records of birds attempting to breed in the autumn. In autumn, the young birds of the summer collect into large flocks together with unpaired birds of previous seasons, often in company with jackdaws.
It is during this time of year that spectacular aerial displays are performed by the birds. The species is monogamous , with the adults forming long-term pair bonds. Partners often support each other in agonistic encounters and a bird may return to its partner after a quarrel where bill twining, an affiliative behaviour, may take place. The call is usually described as caw or kaah , and is somewhat similar to that of the carrion crow, but less raucous.
It is variable in pitch and has several variants, used in different situations. The call is given both in flight and while perched, at which time the bird fans its tail and bows while making each caw. Calls in flight are usually given singly, in contrast to the carrion crow's, which are in groups of three or four. Other sounds are made around the rookery; a high-pitched squawk, a "burring" sound and a semi-chirruping call. Solitary birds occasionally "sing", apparently to themselves, uttering strange clicks, wheezes and human-like notes; the song has been described as a "base or guttural reproduction of the varied and spluttering song" of starlings.
Although outside of captivity rooks have not shown probable tool-use, captive rooks have shown the ability to use and understand puzzles.
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One of the most commonly tested puzzles is the Trap-Tube Problem. Rooks learned how to pull their reward out of the tube while avoiding a trap on one side. In captivity, when confronted with problems, rooks have been documented as one of several species of birds capable of using tools as well as modifying tools to meet their needs. The rooks then discovered they could find and bring a stone and carry it to the tube if no stone was there already. They also used sticks and wire, and figured out how to bend a wire into a hook to reach an item.
When given stones and a tube full of water with a reward floating, they not only understood that they needed to use the stones but also the best stone to use. In one set of experiments, rooks managed to knock a reward off a platform by rolling a stone down a tube toward the base of the platform. Rooks also seemed to understand the idea that a heavier stone will roll more quickly and be more likely to knock the platform over. In this same test, rooks showed they understood that they needed to pick a stone of a shape that would roll easily.
Rooks also show the ability to work together to receive a reward. In order to receive a reward, multiple rooks had to pull strings along the lid of a box in order for it to move and them to reach the reward. Rooks seem to have no preference regarding working as a group comparative to working singly. They also seem to have a notion of gravity, comparable to a six-month-old baby and exceeding the abilities of chimpanzees. Farmers have observed rooks in their fields and thought of them as vermin.
This act was only enforced in piecemeal fashion, but Elizabeth I passed the Act for the Preservation of Grayne in that was taken up with more vigour and large numbers of birds were culled. Francis Willughby mentions rooks in his Ornithology : "These birds are noisome to corn and grain: so that the husbandmen are forced to employ children, with hooting and crackers , and rattles of metal, and, finally by throwing of stones, to scare them away. Rookeries were often perceived as nuisances in rural Britain, and it was previously the practice to hold rook shoots where the juvenile birds, known as "branchers", were shot before they were able to fly.
These events were both very social and a source of food the rook becomes inedible once mature as rook and rabbit pie was considered a great delicacy. Rooks have an extremely wide distribution and very large total population. The main threats they face are from changes in agricultural land use, the application of seed dressings and pesticides, and persecution through shooting. Although total numbers of birds may be declining slightly across the range, this is not at so rapid a rate as to cause concern, and the International Union for Conservation of Nature has assessed the bird's conservation status as being of " least concern ".
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
https://bucounpemot.tk For other uses, see Rook. Conservation status. See also: Tool use by animals and bird intelligence.
The Rooks Have Returned
Version International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved 22 May I decima, reformata ed. Holmiae: Laurentii Salvii. London: Christopher Helm. Oxford English Dictionary 3rd ed. Oxford University Press. September Subscription or UK public library membership required. Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. Retrieved 27 May Palomar Audubon Society. Retrieved 11 August The Oxford English Dictionary.
Retrieved 18 May Witherby Ltd. Penguin Group. New Zealand Birds Online. Live Science. British Birds. August 21, Current Biology. Animal Cognition. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.