HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Parasitic cowbirds thrive with a less ruthless strategy than cuckoos

Berkeley - America's brown-headed cowbird and the European cuckoo are the classic parasitic birds, laying their eggs in the nests of other bird species and leaving the chick-rearing to another parent.

But while a cuckoo hatchling thrives by muscling its host's eggs out of the nest and hogging all the food, a new study by biologists from the University of California, Berkeley, and the University of Cambridge in England shows that cowbird chicks survive with a less ruthless strategy.

A cowbird chick instead joins its nestmates in a chirping chorus that brings in more food than one noisy cowbird chick could demand from its host parents. By eating more than its share, the researchers found, the cowbird chick actually grows faster when sharing the nest and food with two host chicks than it does when all alone in the nest.

"The cowbird alone is incapable of bringing in enough parental resources - basically food - to be able to grow optimally," said Mark E. Hauber, a Miller Research Fellow in UC Berkeley's Museum of Vertebrate Zoology. "When it has nestmates, the whole nest brings in more parental care, because there is more begging altogether, and so the parents attend the nest more. But the cowbird monopolizes the feeding attempts by the parents. In these experiments, instead of getting 33 percent of the feedings that a brood of two host chicks and one cowbird chick gets, the cowbird actually got over 50 percent of the feeding. So, it grew better than when it was living alone."

Hauber, along with University of Cambridge biologists Rebecca M. Kilner and Joah R. Madden, published the findings in the August 6 issue of Science. Hauber will take a faculty position at the University of Auckland in New Zealand at the end of this year.

Though reviled by bird lovers, cowbirds have proved spectacularly successful, having expanded their range from the Midwest to the entire United States over the past 400 years. This is partly due to their p
'"/>

Contact: Robert Sanders
rls@pa.urel.berkeley.edu
510-643-6998
University of California - Berkeley
5-Aug-2004


Page: 1 2 3 4

Related biology news :

1. Parasitic worms read the bodys immune condition and reproduce accordingly
2. HHMI To Award $14 Million In New International Program To Support Research On Infectious And Parasitic Diseases
3. Two Parasitic Wasps Show Promise For Controlling Pest Flies
4. Antarctic penguins thrive in ocean oases
5. Scientists decode genes of microbe that thrives in toxic metals
6. Bacteria may thrive in Antarctic lake
7. Meet the chemical that lets sea creatures thrive
8. Microbes in basalt thrive on mixed diet of toxic waste
9. Butterflies thrive in restored roadside prairies
10. A novel, safer strategy for regulating gene expression
11. New anti-inflammatory strategy for cancer therapy identified by UCSD researchers

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:4/17/2017)... 17, 2017 NXT-ID, Inc. (NASDAQ: NXTD ... filing of its 2016 Annual Report on Form 10-K on Thursday ... ... available in the Investor Relations section of the Company,s website at ... website at http://www.sec.gov . 2016 Year Highlights: ...
(Date:4/11/2017)... Research and Markets has announced the addition of the ... ... to grow at a CAGR of 30.37% during the period 2017-2021. ... been prepared based on an in-depth market analysis with inputs from ... prospects over the coming years. The report also includes a discussion ...
(Date:4/5/2017)...  The Allen Institute for Cell Science today announces ... portal and dynamic digital window into the human cell. ... application of deep learning to create predictive models of ... a growing suite of powerful tools. The Allen Cell ... publicly available resources created and shared by the Allen ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:4/21/2017)... BELLINGHAM, Washington, USA (PRWEB) , ... April 21, ... ... for sensing, imaging, and related applications were the focus of researchers, engineers, product ... Sensing 2017 in Anaheim. , Sponsored by SPIE, the international society ...
(Date:4/21/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... April 21, 2017 , ... ... accelerator dedicated to nourishing a range of emerging bio and technology start-ups, is ... April 21, 2017. This double event will start with libations and networking at ...
(Date:4/20/2017)... ... April 20, 2017 , ... ... this new webinar will explore challenging patient cases when screening for direct oral ... there may be a need for bridging parental anticoagulation especially for those at ...
(Date:4/20/2017)...  Eli Lilly and Company (NYSE: LLY ... the prevention of migraine at the American Academy of ... 22-28, 2017, in Boston . ... including safety and patient outcomes data for galcanezumab in ... in monthly migraine headache days among patients with episodic ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: