NEWS

Darwin 2.0: Scientists shed new light on how species diverge Phys.org (Nature paper) Selected by JL Alcantara
Agriculture Is Reshaping the Avian Tree of Life American Scientist (Science paper) Selected by JL Alcantara Fatal Attraction of Short-Tailed Shearwaters to Artificial Lights Science daily ( PloS One paper) Selected by J Broggi
Winter bird feeders: Get ready for a busy season Science/AAAS (Global Change Biology paper) Selected by JL Alcantara
Dinosaur family tree gives fresh insight into rapid rise of birds Phys.org (Current Biology paper) Selected by JL Alcantara
Migrating birds sprint in spring, but take things easy in autumn ScienceDaily (Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology paper) Selected by Jose L. Alcantara
Hummingbirds evolved a strange taste for sugar ScienceNews (Science paper) Selected by JL Alcantara
Group foraging in little penguins ScienceDaily ( PLoS ONE paper) Selected by R Jovani
Mixed Genes Mix Up the Migrations of Hybrid Birds ScienceNewsline (Ecology Letters paper) Selected by JL Alcantara
Dinosaurs 'shrank' regularly to become birds BBC (Science paper) Selected by JL Alcantara
Parrot Who Was Among Last of Its Kind, Said to Have Inspired ‘Rio,’ Dies National Geographic Society Selected by JL Alcantara
Researchers declassify dinosaurs as being the great-great-grandparents of birds Phys.org (Journal of Ornithology paper) Selected by JL Alcantara
Pristine fossil confirms Archaeopteryx as original bird United Press International (Nature paper) Selected by JL Alcantara
All gone: How erasing billions of birds shocked us Yahoo! News (PNAS paper) Selected by JL Alcantara
Plants hitch a lift on migrating birds BBC Nature (PeerJ paper) Selected by JL Alcantara
Mapping the evolution of a ring species Univ. British Columbbia (Nature paper) Selected by R Jovani
Closest Living Relative of Ancient Elephant Bird Is Tiny LiveScience (Science paper) Selected by JL Alcantara
Identifying evolutionary distinct birds WIRED (Current Biology paper) Selected by R Jovani
Ten Thousand Birds: Ornithology since Darwin Myriad Birds Selected by JL Alcantara
The 100 most distinct and rare birds BBC Nature (Current Biology paper) Selected by JL Alcantara
Hummingbird Evolution Soared After They Invaded South America 22 Million Years Ago ScienceNewsline (Current Biology paper) Selected by JL Alcantara
Bird’s Extinction Is Tied to the Arrival of Humans The New York Times (PNAS paper) Selected by JL Alcantara
A bird-like dinosaur called “Chicken from Hell” NPR news (PLOS One paper) Selected by JL Alcantara
Wintering irruptions of Snowy owls in North America and Europe (in Spanish) SEO/BirdLife blog Selected by R Jovani
Punk Amazon pheasant is a European emigrant NewScientists (Naturwissenschaften paper) Selected by JL Alcantara
Flights of Fancy in Avian Evolution American Scientist Selected by JL Alcantara Why do birds fly in a V? Endangered ibis reveals its amazing secret (VIDEO) Los Angeles Times (Nature letter) Selected by J Broggi
Sharp-toothed tigerfish jumps to eat a bird (VIDEO) (J Fish Biol paper) Nature News Selected by J Broggi
On the evolution of bird fingers. PHYS.ORG (J Exp Zool paper) Selected by R Jovani
Albatross colony shows benefits of same-sex pairing ABC Science (J Proceedings of the Royal Society B paper) Selected by JL Alcantara Swifts stay airborne for six months at a time New scientist(Nature communications paper) Selected by J Broggi
100 years ago bird lovers were encouraged to use the field glasses rather than the gun The Guardian Selected by R Jovani
Trees send distress signals that birds use to find insects Sinc(Ecol Lett paper) Selected by R Jovani
I’m singing in the rainforest Max-Planck-Gesellschaft (journal of interdisciplinary music studies paper) Selected by JL Alcantara
Fossil Poo Reveals Where Ancient Giant Bird Ate Discovery News (PNAS paper) Selected by JL Alcantara
Colonizing songbirds lost sense of syntax e! Science News (Current Biology paper) Selected by JL Alcantara
Songbirds may have 'borrowed' DNA to fuel migration Phys.org (Evolution paper) Selected by JL Alcantara
Collision Course ScienceNews (ScienceNews paper) Selected by JL Alcantara
Social learning of migratory performance PhysOrg (Science paper) Selected by R Jovani
Evolution of parasitic egg colouration: parasites also select. Not Exactly Rocket Science blog(Biol Lett paper) Selected by R Jovani
European birds adjust their flight initiation distance to road speed limits BBC News(Biol Lett paper) Selected by R Jovani
The secret of male beauty (in turkeys) UCL News (PLOS Genetics paper) Selected by JL Alcantara
Bird hunters 'emptying Afghan skies' BBC News Asia Selected by JL Alcantara
Secrets of the world’s toughest little bird Griffith U. News (Nature Communications paper) Selected by JL Alcantara Outdoor Cats: Single Greatest Source of Human-Caused Mortality for Birds and Mammals American Bird Conservancy (Nature communications paper) Selected by J Broggi
Hiding in plain sight: New species of bird discovered in capital city e! Science News (Forktail paper) Selected by JL Alcantara
Foraging space partitioning without territoriality in a seabird ScienceDaily (Science paper) Selected by R Jovani
Bird extinction leads to rapid evolution of seed size The Red Notebook (Science paper) Selected by R Jovani
Bird song changes in translocated birds ScienceDaily (J Appl Ecol paper) Selected by R Jovani
Why penguins lost their wings ABC Science (PNAS paper) Selected by JL Alcantara
Simulated patternity uncertainty: Males care about intruders but feed nestlings regardless of patternity uncertainty ScienceDaily (PLoS ONE paper) Selected by R Jovani
Seabird Bones Reveal Changes in Open-Ocean Food Chain Science Daily(PNAS paper) Selected by F Mateos-Gonzalez
New fossil brings new light on the evolution of hummingbirds and swifts Science NOW(Proc R Soc B paper) Selected by R Jovani
Testosterone vs. audience on the regulation of bird fights and social status ScienceDaily (Hormones and Behavior paper) Selected by R Jovani
Lead bullet fragments poison rare US condors BBC News Selected by JL Alcantara
Avoiding cuckoo parasitism by breeding indoors Live Science(Beh Ecol Sociobiol paper) Selected by R Jovani
Why I study duck genitalia... or... why basic science matters Slate Selected by R Jovani
A study about play in cranes BBC Nature(Ibis paper) Selected by R Jovani
Pretty great tits make better mothers Discover (Frontiers in Zoology paper) Selected by JL Alcantara
Humans wiped out Pacific island birds ABC Science (PNAS paper) Selected by JL Alcantara
The Rise and Fall of Four-Winged Birds Not Exactly Rocket Science (Science paper) Selected by R Jovani
Sex role reversal: Female shorebirds rule the roost BBC News (Nature Communications paper) Selected by JL Alcantara
Birds communicate their size through song ScienceDaily(PLoS ONE paper) Selected by R Jovani
How Birds of Different Feathers Flock Together ScienceDaily (Animal Behaviour paper) Selected by JL Alcantara
The Owl Comes Into Its Own The New York Times-Science Selected by JL Alcantara
On the evolution of UV vision in birds ScienceDaily(BMC Evol Biol paper) Selected by R Jovani
A great tit predating upon a common redpoll (video; Finnish) Ilta Sanomat Selected by R Jovani
Killing Barred Owls To Save the Spotted Owl CNN Selected by JL Alcantara
New dinosaur fossil challenges bird evolution theory e! Science News (Nature paper) Selected by JL Alcantara
Fractal geometry of a plumage pattern changes with physical condition in partridges ScienceNow(Proc R Soc B paper) Selected by I Galván
As Andean condors decline, tradition draws critics Reuters Selected by JL Alcantara





see Older News on the left-hand column

Friday, 20 February 2009

Caged budgerigars and invasive parakeets

Soon or later caged birds escape, and can eventually create stable invasive populations. In Spain, there are around 300 native breeding bird species and more than 200 exotic species in captivity. Currently, around 50 of these pet species have been reported breeding on the wild (are successful invaders), but nobody knows why some species are invasive and others not. A potential explanation is that invasive species are the preferred as pets, having more opportunities to escape and establish in the field. But this is not the case... for instance, budgerigars (Melopsittacus undulatus) are much more popular as pets than monk parakeets (Myiopsitta monachus). However, parakeets have become common breeders in Spanish cities, and budgerigars do not survive more than a few days in freedom.


Martina Carrete and José Luis Tella (Estación Biológica de Doñana, CSIC, Sevilla) recorded caged birds on the pet market during a year. As expected, they found many more budgerigars (2878) than parakeets (95) and, in general, they saw that the most abundant species in the shops were the less invasive in the field! Why? These researchers give a simple and powerful explanation: successful invaders are wild-caught species (e.g. parakeets), and poor invaders are captive-breed species (e.g. budgerigars). This is not just a statistical trend: no pet species coming from captive breeding holds a stable population in the wild, but all exotic species regularly breeding in Spain are wild-caught species in their countries of origin. The authors argue different factors that can explain this, such as eroding of anti-predator and foraging behaviours in captive-breed species. They also explain the implications that this discovery may have to regulate the trade of exotic birds.


My point of view:

- This is the kind of clever idea that I love: those that are (apparently) so simple that it seems impossible you have not thought about it before.
- As use to happen with good answers, this paper opens new questions: have captive-breed species some characteristic/s that explains, at the same time, why they are breed in captivity and why they are poor invaders?
- If so, is this characteristic/s relevant for the final owner of the pet (e.g. beautiful plumage), for the bird-breeder (e.g. reproduce in crowded cages) or for both (e.g. easy to feed)?

>Carrete, M. & Tella, J.L. 2008. Wild-bird trade and exotic invasions: a new link of conservation concern? Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment 6: 207-211.
Photos by: Parakeets: Carlos Luna (Creative Commons; Flickr); budgerigars: Michael Baranovsky (GNU Free Documentation License; Wikipedia).

Interesting Spanish link: Grupo de Aves Exòticas

.............................català......................................................

Periquitos de gàbia y cotorretes de ciutat


Els ocells engabiats tard o d’hora s’escapen, i poden acabar creant poblacions invasores estables. A Espanya hi ha unes 300 espècies d’aus reproductores autòctones, i més de 200 espècies exòtiques en captivitat. Actualment, 50 espècies exòtiques s’han trobat criant en llibertat (son espècies invasores exitoses), però ningú sap perquè algunes espècies han tingut èxit i d’altres no. El primer que hom pot pensar és que són les espècies més freqüents en les gàbies, i que per tant, que han tingut més oportunitats d’escapar i establir-se en llibertat. Però això no és així... demostració: Oi que coneixes més gent que tingui o hagi tingut un periquito (Melopsittacus undulatus) que una cotorreta de pit gris (Myiopsitta monachus)? I no és cert que a Espanya hi ha poblacions reproductores de cotorretes però no de periquitos?


Martina Carrete y José Luis Tella (Estación Biológica de Doñana, CSIC, Sevilla) van anar durant un any per comerços contant tots els ocells que estaven a la venta. Com tu ja suposes, van trobar molts més periquitos (2878) que no pas cotorretes de pit gris (95) i en general, van veure que les espècies més abundants en les tendes eren les menys abundants en llibertat! Quina explicació pot tindre això? Aquests investigadors aporten una resposta tant senzilla com contundent: les espècies que tenen més èxit com a invasores són les capturades als seus països d’origen (com la cotorreta), i no les que es crien en captivitat (com el periquito). I no és una simple tendència estadística: ninguna de les espècies exòtiques que es crien en captivitat pel marcat de mascotes té poblacions estables a Espanya, i totes les espècies que tenen poblacions estables reproductores provenen de captures d’aus en llibertat en els seus països d’origen. Els autors d’aquest article expliquen les implicacions que pot tindre aquest descobriment per regular el comerç d’aus exòtiques.

El meu punt de vista:

- Aquest és el tipus de idea que m’encanta: idees (aparentment) tan simples que et preguntes com no se t’ha acudit abans a tu.
- Com sol passar amb les bones respostes, aquest article obre noves preguntes: tenen les espècies criades en captivitat alguna característica que les faci, al mateix temps, bones per ser criades en captivitat, i males invasores?
- Si això és així, es aquesta característica/ques rellevant pel propietari de la mascota (p.ex. plomatge bonic), pel criador (p.ex. que s’adapti bé a criar en captivitat en altes densitats) o pels dos (p.ex. que sigui fàcil d’alimentar)?


>Carrete, M. & Tella, J.L. 2008. Wild-bird trade and exotic invasions: a new link of conservation concern? Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment 6: 207-211.
Photos by: Parakeets: Carlos Luna (Creative Commons; Flickr); budgerigars: Michael Baranovsky (GNU Free Documentation License; Wikipedia).


Enllaç d’interès: Grupo de Aves Exòticas



----------------------------- ESPAÑOL -----------------------------------


Periquitos de jaula y cotorritas de ciudad
Los pájaros enjaulados tarde o temprano se escapan, y pueden acabar creando poblaciones invasoras estables. En España hay unas 300 especies de aves reproductoras autóctonas, y más de 200 especies exóticas en cautividad. Actualmente, 50 especies exóticas se han encontrado criando en libertad (son especies invasoras exitosas), pero nadie sabe por qué algunas especies han tenido éxito y otras no. Lo primero que se puede pensar es que son las especies más frecuentes en las jaulas, y que por lo tanto, que han tenido más oportunidades de escapar y establecerse en libertad. Pero eso no es así... demostración: ¿Verdad que conoces a más gente que tenga o haya tenido un periquito (Melopsittacus undulatus) que una cotorrita de pecho gris (Myiopsitta monachus)? ¿Y no es cierto que en España hay poblaciones reproductoras de cotorritas pero no de periquitos?
Martina Carrete y José Luis Tella (Estación Biológica de Doñana, CSIC, Sevilla) fueron durando un año por comercios, contando todos los pájaros que estaban en venta. Como tú ya supones, encontraron muchos más periquitos (2878) que cotorritas de pecho gris (95) y, en general, ¡vieron que las especies más abundantes en las tiendas eran las menos abundantes en libertad! ¿Qué explicación puede tener eso? Estos investigadores aportan una respuesta tan sencilla como contundente: las especies que tienen más éxito como invasoras son las capturadas en sus países de origen (como la cotorra), y no las que se crían en cautividad (como el periquito). Y no es una simple tendencia estadística: ninguna de las especias exóticas que se crían en cautividad para el mercado de mascotas tienen poblaciones estables en España, y todas las especies que tienen poblaciones estables reproductoras, provienen de capturas de aves en libertad en sus países de origen. Los autores de este artículo explican las implicaciones que puede tener este descubrimiento para regular el comercio de aves exóticas.


Mi punto de vista:- Éste es el tipo de idea que me encanta: ideas (aparentemente) tan simples que te preguntas cómo no se te ha ocurrido antes a ti.- Como suele pasar con las buenas respuestas, este artículo abre nuevas preguntas: ¿tienen las especies criadas en cautividad alguna característica que las haga, al mismo tiempo, buenas para ser criada en cautividad, y malas invasoras?- Si eso es así, ¿es esta característica/cas relevante para el propietario de la mascota (p.ej. plumaje bonito), para el criador (p.ej. que se adapte bien a criar en cautividad en altas densidades) o para los dos (p.ej. que sea fácil de alimentar)?


>Carrete, M. & Tella, J.L. 2008. Wild-bird trade and exotic invasions: a new link of conservation concern? Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment 6: 207-211.


Photos by: Parakeets: Carlos Luna (Creative Commons; Flickr); budgerigars: Michael Baranovsky (GNU Free Documentation License; Wikipedia).


Link interesante sobre el tema: Grupo de Aves Exòticas

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