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Bright birds are cautious: seasonally conspicuous plumage prompts risk avoidance by male superb fairy-wrens

McQueen, Alexandra; Naimo, Annalise C.; Teunissen, Niki; Magrath, Robert; Delhey, Kaspar; Peters, Anne

Description

Increased predation risk is considered a cost of having conspicuous colours, affecting the anti-predator behaviour of colourful animals. However, this is difficult to test, as individual factors often covary with colour and behaviour. We used alarm call playback and behavioural observations to assess whether individual birds adjust their response to risk according to their plumage colour. Male superb fairy-wrens (Malurus cyaneus) change from a dull brown to conspicuous blue plumage each year,...[Show more]

CollectionsANU Research Publications
Date published: 2017
Type: Journal article
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1885/233089
Source: Proceedings of the Royal Society of London Series B: Biological Sciences
DOI: 10.1098/rspb.2017.0446

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