Bad parenting could give zebra finches the evolutionary edge

Species must reproduce to survive, and animals have found unique ways of achieving this. For some, including us, it seems as though producing a few offspring that require extended care is the best strategy. For others, such ...

Cuckoos hide from each other using 'cryptic' eggs

Cuckoos aren't the kind of parents you'd want. They never raise their young ones, leaving that job to other birds. They achieve this by laying their eggs in other expectant birds' nests, who treat them as their own and take ...

Fear of the cuckoo mafia

If a restaurant owner fails to pay the protection money demanded of him, he can expect his premises to be trashed. Warnings like these are seldom required, however, as fear of the consequences is enough to make restaurant ...

Chickless birds guard nests of relatives

(Phys.org) —New research has solved a mystery as to why some birds choose not to reproduce, and instead help to guard the nests of their close relatives. This occurs in about nine percent of all bird species.

Parasite arms race spurs color change in bird eggs

The eggs laid by two African bird species have evolved different color patterns over a period of just 40 years, according to new research published in The American Naturalist. The quick change appears to be driven by an unwanted ...

Natural born killers

(PhysOrg.com) -- Only a few days old and still blind and naked, chicks of the African greater honeyguide kill their newly hatched foster siblings in order to eliminate competition for parental care, new research from the ...

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