Asher Elbein

Reporter, Audubon Magazine

Articles by Asher Elbein

A group of male and female Wild Turkeys foraging close together.
Native Americans Domesticated Turkeys Long Before the Pilgrims Arrived
November 15, 2023 — Indigenous societies in the Americas valued the birds so highly that they tamed them at least twice, including in the U.S. Southwest. Turkey feathers still have abundant uses to tribes there today.
Why You Should Scale Up Your Birding By Looking for Reptiles
March 23, 2023 — Lower your binoculars and expand your next trip by seeking out snakes, lizards, and amphibians. Here are some expert tips to get you started.
'Prehistoric Planet,' a Stunning New Series, Depicts Dinosaurs Like Never Before
May 23, 2022 — Drawing from science that connects modern birds and ancient dinosaurs, the David Attenborough-narrated Apple TV+ show was influenced by avian biology and behavior at every step.
Newly Recorded Condor ‘Virgin Birth’ Is Another Way Birds Are Like Reptiles
November 10, 2021 — Zoo researchers discovered that two female California Condors had reproduced without males, a phenomenon known as parthenogenesis.
Is the Attwater's Prairie-Chicken Starting to Make a Comeback?
June 23, 2021 — The endangered subspecies has been in trouble for two decades, but recent data suggests the bird's population is booming in the wild.
This Producer's Joyful Bird Beats Are Wowing TikTok
April 16, 2021 — So Wylie learned last year that owl calls are "kind of fire." Now she is expanding her catchy avian collection.
In Praise of the Great-tailed Grackle, a Bird That Doesn't Need Your Respect
January 11, 2021 — Few species are as polarizing as these urbanites, but one thing is indisputable: Their ubiquity is a sign of their adaptability and success.
‘It’s a Bird’ Is a New Comic Written by Central Park Birder Christian Cooper
September 14, 2020 — The story, which is loosely inspired by Cooper's racist encounter in the park, is the first in the digital "Represent!" series from DC Comics.
The Bird World Is Grappling With Its Own Confederate Relic: McCown's Longspur
July 02, 2020 — A grassland species named for an ornithologist who later became a Confederate general, the longspur has sparked a fiery debate over which honorific bird names should be reconsidered. Some say all of them.
"What's the Deal With Birds?" a New Paper Asks—While Making a Point
April 22, 2020 — In the world of academia, predatory journals with almost no vetting process abound. One researcher had enough.