'Naked' penguins baffle experts
Researchers from the Wildlife Conservation Society, the University of Washington, and other groups are grappling with a wildlife mystery: Why are some penguin chicks losing their feathers?
New process turns waste chicken feathers into biodegradable plastic
Nearly 3 billion pounds of chicken feathers are plucked each year in the United States -- and most end up in the trash. Now, a new method of processing those feathers could create better types of environmentally-friendly ...
The role of color in animal courtship uncovered
Researchers at UQ's Queensland Brain Institute are one step closer to unlocking the role of color in animal courtship rituals after identifying a unique feather structure in birds of paradise.
Humidity changes color of birds' feathers, biologists discover
Tree swallows' iridescent feathers change from blue-green to muted yellow when exposed to humidity. The plumage reverses to previous color tones as humidity decreases.
Feathers too weak for early bird flight
(PhysOrg.com) -- The evolution of flight took longer than previously thought with the ancestors of modern birds “rubbish” at flying, if they flew at all, according to a Manchester scientist.
Flag has ladies all of a flutter
(PhysOrg.com) -- Scientists have revealed how the male common snipe 'flies the flag' to get the girl.
Earliest toothless bird found
When a whistle beats a tweet
Biologists have discovered that a species of Australian pigeon has a secret way of alerting fellow birds to predators -- a "whistle" emitted by flapping wings when the bird takes off in alarm.
Study catches two bird populations as they split into seperate species
A new study finds that a change in a single gene has sent two closely related bird populations on their way to becoming two distinct species. The study, published in the August issue of the American Naturalist, is one of ...
What limits the size of birds?
Why aren't birds larger? Fifteen-kilogram swans hold the current upper size record for flying birds, although the extinct Argentavis of the Miocene Epoch in Argentina is estimated to have weighed 70 kilograms, the size of ...
Long, sexy tails not a drag on male birds
The long tails sported by many male birds in the tropics look like they're a drag to carry around and a distinct disadvantage when fleeing predators, but experiments by University of California, Berkeley, ...
Debris from downed spaceship found 35 miles away
Federal accident investigators say that tiny pieces of an experimental spaceship that broke up in flight have been found 35 miles from the main wreckage area.
How do birds survive storms and other harsh weather?
Survival in the wild, cruel, pitiless world is a tenuous thing. There are predators trying to eat you, pathogens trying to infect you, rivals trying to beat you. It is truly, as Alfred Lord Tennyson wrote, ...
Falcon feathers pop-up during dive
Similar to wings and fins with self-adaptive flaps, the feathers on a diving peregrine falcon's feathers may pop-up during high speed dives, according to a study published in PLOS ONE on January 29, 2014 b ...