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The Nature of Things

A blog about nature and the environment

Speak chickadee?



You probably don’t. But the <a href=”http://www.birds.cornell.edu/AllAboutBirds/BirdGuide/White-breasted_Nuthatch.html” target=”_blank”>white-breasted nuthatches</a> that tend to hang out with <a href=”http://www.birds.cornell.edu/AllAboutBirds/BirdGuide/Black-capped_Chickadee.html” target=”_blank”>black-capped chickadees</a> apparently do. Anyone with a bird feeder in the Lower Hudson Valley can’t help but notice the gray-and-white birds (pictured below) that walk head first down tree trunks.

nuthatch.jpg Long wintertime companions of chickadees — those two plus tufted titmice move in flocks together— nuthatches, according to a University of Washington researcher, are able to <a href=”http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2007/03/20/ap/tech/main2590197.shtml” target=”_blank”>understand what chickadees are saying</a>.

Next time you look out your window at the birds congregating around your feeder, you now know they know something you don’t know.

For the scientifically minded, here’s the study’s <a href=”http://www.pnas.org/cgi/content/abstract/0605183104v1″ target=”_blank”>abstract</a>.

This entry was posted on Wednesday, March 21st, 2007 at 1:20 pm by Mike Risinit. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.
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