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Some female hummingbirds that look like males face less social harassment


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Some female hummingbirds that look like males face less social harassment

Some female birds are dressed to the nines -- yet oddly interact less with others.

Brightly colored feathers may be the key for these female hummingbirds to avoid physical fights with others of their species.

Female hummingbirds tend to have muted feathers, but researchers found that about 20% of female White-necked Jacobins have bright feathers -- like their male counterparts -- which saves them from being socially harassed, according to a study published Thursday in Current Biology.

Young birds often start out with female feather coloring, but in the case of this hummingbird species, they are born looking like males, said study author Jay Falk, who worked as a doctoral student in the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute during this study. He's currently a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Washington in Seattle.

As the hummingbirds he studied grew up, only 80% of the females molted into drabber colors, leaving the remaining females with male coloring.

Researchers placed taxidermy mounts of the hummingbirds throughout Gamboa, Panama, and observed how the other hummingbirds interacted with them.

The females with male coloration faced less social harassment from other male and female hummingbirds compared to their more muted counterparts, Falk said.

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Maybe they need to have separate bathrooms to help lessen the confusion it today's woke world.

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53 minutes ago, MovieMadness said:

 

Maybe they need to have separate bathrooms to help lessen the confusion it today's woke world.

Nah.  Both male and female hummingbirds can crap on the same cars with no other hummingbirds complaining.  ;) 

Sepiatone

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