Flightless Rail

Smallest island dwelling flightless bird got there how?

Smallest island dwelling flightless bird got there how?  According to ScienceDaily 1 November 2018 and Science Alert 7 November 2018 and Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution, doi: 10.1016/j.ympev.2018.10.007, the world’s smallest flightless bird lives on a small island in the South Atlantic named Inaccessible Island. Not surprisingly it has been named the Inaccessible Island Rail. Since […]

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Bird Singing

Bird Voice Box is Unique

Bird voice box is unique, according to ScienceDaily 24 September 2018 and Science (AAAS) News 5 October and PNAS published online 24 September 2018, doi: 10.1073/pnas.1804586115. Reptiles, amphibians and mammals produce sounds in the larynx – a structure in the throat at the top of the trachea (windpipe), but bird sounds are produced in a […]

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Brown Eared Bulbul

Birds Disperse Stick Insects

Birds disperse stick insects, according to reports in Science News and ScienceDaily 28 May 2018, and Ecology, 29 May 2018, doi: 10.1002/ecy.2230. Stick insects are found throughout the world and scientists have wondered how they could have spread to land masses that are separated by long distances. Stick insects are large and don’t fly so […]

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Birds

“Bird Brain” Revision Needed

“Bird brain” revision needed according to an article in Outside JEB 9 May 2018 doi:10.1242/jeb.170001 and Current Biology doi:10.1016/j.cub.2018.01.036, 5 March 2018. Birds have small brains without a cerebral cortex, the folded multilayered outer region of mammal brains that supposedly makes mammals smarter than other creatures.  Thus, the epithet “bird-brain” is used to insult someone’s […]

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Bird's Nest Eggs

Nanotechnology Cracks Eggshell Problem

Nanotechnology cracks eggshell problem, according to ScienceDaily 30 March 2018, ABC News 31 March 2018 and Science Advances, doi: 10.1126/sciadv.aar3219, 30 March 2018. Biologists and engineers have studied the microscopic structure of chicken eggshells to work out how such shells are strong enough to avoid being broken while an embryonic bird develops inside, but yet […]

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Feathered Dinos Had Ticks

Feathered dinos had ticks, claim scientists in articles in, National Geographic 12 December 2017, BBC News and ScienceDaily 13 December 2017, and Nature Communications doi:10.1038/s41467-017-01550-z published online 12 December 2017. An international team of researchers from Spain, USA and UK have found three species of ticks preserved in amber from Burma. The amber is dated […]

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Galapagos Finches Speciate

Galapagos finches speciate, according to reports in BBC News and ScienceDaily 24 November 2017, and Science doi: 10.1126/science.aao4593, 23 November 2017. A group of scientists from Sweden and USA claim to have observed a new species of finch evolve on the Galapagos Island of Daphne Major. In 1981 a male Large Cactus Finch Geospiza conirostris […]

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Blue Bugerigar

Blue Aussie Budgerigar Gene

Blue Aussie budgerigar gene found, according to reports in Science (AAAS) News and ScienceDaily 5 October 2017 and Cell, doi: 10.1016/j.cell.2017.08.016, 5 October 2017. Budgerigars are small Australian parrots that are commonly kept as pets. In the wild they are mostly green with a yellow head and throat, but a variant with a blue body […]

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Birds Roosting

Dinosaurs Roost Like Birds

Dinosaurs roost like birds, according articles in ScienceDaily 24 August 2017 and Nature news 25 August 2017. Greg Funston, a palaeontologist at the University of Alberta, Canada, and colleagues have studied three dinosaurs embedded together in one block of rock from Mongolia, dated as 70 million years old. The dinosaurs have been identified as a […]

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Swift Wing Secrets

Swift wing secrets revealed, according to reports in ScienceNOW and news@nature 25 April 2007. Swifts are small, migratory birds that spend most of their lives in the air. They can eat, mate and sleep whilst flying, changing, or “morphing” their wing shape according to the speed and agility required. A group of scientists led by […]

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