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Darwin’s finches continue to inform and confuse | Cosmos

Charles Darwin’s famous Galápagos finches are once again helping us to understand the natural world. New research on these complex little birds demonstrates that our understanding of the genetic markers used to predict a species’ extinction is overly simplistic, a pressing problem at a time of unprecedented extinction rates around …

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Sweet beaks: What Galapagos finches and marine bacteria have in common

A bloom with great effect This principle is not limited to macrofauna. It also applies in the realm of marine microbes, the scientists from Bremen now show. Satellite photos taken from coastal areas during warm seasons often show that the ocean is green rather than blue. This color originates from …

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Parasites are Destroying the Beaks of Darwin’s Famous Finches

Nearly 200 years ago Charles Darwin voyaged to the Galapagos islands and began to formulate his theory of evolution — largely thanks to his observations of how finches’ beaks varied in shape from island to island. But now, the finches’ famous beaks might be in trouble, thanks to a small, …

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A decade after the predators have gone, Galapagos Island finches are still being spooked

The study found that the finches‘ fearful responses — known as antipredator behaviour — were sustained through multiple generations after the threat was gone, which could have detrimental consequences for their survival. The work by Dr Kiyoko Gotanda, a zoologist at the University of Cambridge, is one of the first …

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Genetic diversity couldn’t save Darwin’s finches: Extinct populations of Galapagos finches had higher genetic diversity than many survivors

The study of the finches of the Galapagos Islands could change the way conservation biologists think about species with naturally fragmented populations to understand their potential for extinction. UC graduate Heather Farrington and UC biologists Kenneth Petren and Lucinda Lawson found that genetic diversity was not a good predictor of …

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Darwin’s finches continue to inform and confuse

Charles Darwin’s famous Galápagos finches are once again helping us to understand the natural world. New research on these complex little birds demonstrates that our understanding of the genetic markers used to predict a species’ extinction is overly simplistic, a pressing problem at a time of unprecedented extinction rates around …

Read More »

Parasites ruin some finches’ songs by chewing through the birds’ beaks

Invasive parasites in the Galápagos Islands may leave some Darwin’s tree finches singing the blues. The nonnative Philornis downsi fly infests the birds’ nests and lays its eggs there. Fly larvae feast on the chicks’ blood and tissue, producing festering wounds and killing over half of the baby birds. Among …

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Alert: Junk Food Is Harming Birds!

(MENAFN – The Costa Rica News) Better known as the ‘Darwin’s finches‘, it is the species of birds that, until now, most fe on food prepared for human consumption. This phenomenon occurs due to the increasing population and tourism in Costa Rica and, also, in latitudes outside of our country. …

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Alert: “Junk Food” Is Harming Birds!

Better known as the “Darwin’s finches”, it is the species of birds that, until now, most fe on food prepared for human consumption. This phenomenon occurs due to the increasing population and tourism in Costa Rica and, also, in latitudes outside of our country. Finches eating food for humans Recently, …

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Human activity can influence the gut microbiota of Darwin’s finches in the Galapagos

In the Galapagos Islands, Darwin’s finches drawn to junk food are experiencing changes in their gut microbiota and their body mass as compared to finches that don’t encounter human food, according to a new University of Connecticut study. The study of Darwin’s Finches, published today in Molecular Ecology, builds upon …

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