The woodpecker and the news
I am as happy as anyone else would be about the ivory-billed woodpecker sightings, but it is clear that the announcement of its continued existence was highly "massaged."
Someone on the ASLE mailing list mentioned that the Nature Conservancy had been buying up land in the area of the sightings, which fact suggests that the birds were found months ago.
Yep, today someone posted an article from the Christian Science Monitor, about a sighting of the bird on February 27, 2004, more than a year ago.
Somebody at the Cornell ornithology lab wanted to have all their woodpeckers in a row before they told the public.
UPDATE: The AP says a birder out canoeing first saw the woodpecker on February 11, 2004.