NauenThen

Tough birds

October 29, 2017

Tags: fighting birds, Cornell Bird Lab

Sub-Antarctic birds.
I love that someone (the Cornell Ornithology Lab) had the idea—and figured out a way—to see how birds ranked at bird feeders. Who holds their place, who gets pushed aside?

Aside from the obvious—turkeys are the largest, so they never get kicked off feeders, & vice versa for sparrows—the researchers found:

It turns out that doves, buntings, and grosbeaks are less dominant than we would expect based on their body size, whereas crows, jays, woodpeckers, and blackbirds are more dominant than we would expect based on their size. These findings mean our intuitions weren’t so far off: doves really are peaceful, and jays really are feisty.