[Tweeters] red color in birds -- nature or nurture?

Devorah the Ornithologist birdologist at gmail.com
Wed Oct 12 09:04:13 PDT 2016


hello everyone,

some of you may recall that i have a particular passion for plumage
pigments and how they affect behavior, ecology and evolution of birds. for
example, i wrote a reasonably popular piece about how birds became red:

http://www.forbes.com/sites/grrlscientist/2016/05/20/how-birds-became-red/

and i followed that up with a piece describing the weird (ironic?) origins
of the "redness gene" and the many cool things it shows us about evolution:

http://www.forbes.com/sites/grrlscientist/2016/08/03/which-came-first-seeing-red-or-being-red/

an elegant study was published today that also explores the nature of red
plumage pigments, this time in northern (red-shafted & yellow-shafted)
flickers. the paper is just so beautiful, so inspirationally elegant that
it still has me thinking about all the possibilities for behavior, ecology,
evolution (especially taxonomy!), in this familiar species complex:

http://www.forbes.com/sites/grrlscientist/2016/10/12/woodpeckers-dyed-red-by-introduced-plants/

oh, and don't forget implications for birding!

cheers,

--
GrrlScientist | @GrrlScientist <https://twitter.com/GrrlScientist>
Blogs: Forbes <http://www.forbes.com/sites/grrlscientist/> | Evolution
Institute <https://evolution-institute.org/profile/grrlscientist/?source=> |
Medium <https://medium.com/@GrrlScientist>
Keep up with my writing: TinyLetter <https://tinyletter.com/grrlscientist>
sunt lacrimae rerum et mentem mortalia tangunt. [Virgil, Aeneid]


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