Bad parenting could give zebra finches the evolutionary edge

World of Birds

 Zebra finches may have the potential to become brood parasites. Credit: Keith Gerstung, CC BY-SA Zebra finches may have the potential to become brood parasites. Credit: Keith Gerstung, CC BY-SA

Species must reproduce to survive, and animals have found unique ways of achieving this. For some, including us, it seems as though producing a few offspring that require extended care is the best strategy. For others, such as many coral reef fishes, many offspring that require little care appears better suited.

Brood parasitism is among the most bizarre breeding strategies in nature. A brood parasite, such as a cuckoo, manipulates another individual into raising its young. Hosts do all they can to stop brood parasites from successfully reproducing, because they usually harm their own young. Brood parasites fight back, and the two species can become locked in a coevolutionary arms race.

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About narhvalur

Environmentalist, Animal Lover, Birder,Equastrian
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