Island life gives birds bigger brains
Clever individuals do best in restricted environments.
Birds that live on oceanic islands have larger brains than their relatives on the mainland, new research shows. And t...
Crows make tools by design, not by rote
Experiment finds clear indications of culture.
The crows of New Caledonia have a reputation for being clever, but new research indicates they may be able to pass on...
Parent birds don’t like the kids hanging around
Nestlings that overstay their welcome endanger the entire brood.
When is the best time to leave the nest? That’s the dilemma encountered by birds the world over. Staying home longer...
Sons and plovers: young birds are mummy’s boys
Male red plovers raise daughters, and females look after sons.
Australia’s smallest shorebird, the red-capped plover, is a sexually dimorphic species, with a brightly coloured male...
Birds may see magnetic field with help of protein
Evidence of a special molecule to use magnetism for navigation.
New research has taken a step further towards understanding how birds detect the magnetic field of the Earth and use ...
How to build the perfect egg
Nanostructures make eggshells strong and weak.
The changing nanostructure of bird eggs enables them to be sturdy enough to provide protection, yet fragile enough to...
City blackbirds are sicker, but longer lived
Study finds biomarkers for city birds sound warnings.
Blackbirds in urban areas are in poorer health than their country cousins but, paradoxically, are living longer. Com...
Female birdsong ignored, researchers say
Dismissing female song as irrelevant is a serious error.
In one of the stranger expressions of gender inequality, female birdsong has been largely ignored by ornithologists, ...
Australian raptors start fires to flush out prey
The first recorded instance of fire being used by animals.
Australian Aboriginal lore is replete with references to birds carrying fire, and some traditional ceremonies even de...
The beauty of ecology
Stunning images celebrating both scientific and photographic skills.
At first glance this photograph of Heron Reef, in the southernmost section of the Great Barrier Reef, looks somewhat ...
Why are crows so smart?
In fact as smart as a seven-year-old human.
They can recognise faces, use tools – even drop nuts on a road for cars to crack (then pick them up with the safety o...