As regular CFZ-watchers will know, for some time Corinna has been doing a column for Animals & Men and a regular segment on On The Track... particularly about out-of-place birds and rare vagrants. There seem to be more and more bird stories from all over the world hitting the news these days so, to make room for them all - and to give them all equal and worthy coverage - she has set up this new blog to cover all things feathery and Fortean.

Wednesday, 2 October 2019

Diving birds follow each other when fishing

Date:  September 23, 2019
Source:  University of Exeter
Diving seabirds watch each other to work out when to dive, new research shows.
Scientists studied European shags and found they were twice as likely to dive after seeing a fellow bird go underwater.
The study is the first to investigate why large groups (known as "rafts") of shags dive together at sea.
University of Exeter scientists filmed the birds off the Isles of Scilly to examine their behaviour.
"Our results suggest these birds aren't just reacting to underwater cues when deciding where and when to dive," said Dr Julian Evans, who led the study as part of his PhD at the University of Exeter.
"They respond to social cues by watching their fellow birds and copying their behaviour.
"They're essentially using other flock members as sources of information, helping them choose the best place to find fish."

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