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Singing in the shade: song and song posts of northern cardinals near nesting Cooper’s hawks

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Animals may compensate for increased predation risk by changing the behaviours that make them vulnerable. In this study, we compared the singing and perching behaviours of northern cardinals (Cardinalis cardinalis L., 1758) living within 100m of nesting Cooper’s hawks (Accipiter cooperii (Bonaparte, 1828)) with that of cardinals in similar control sites. Cardinals sang similar amounts at hawk nests and at control sites, but they sang from less exposed perches when near Cooper’s hawk nests. These results suggest that singing from an exposed perch is both more dangerous and more effective for northern cardinals.

Les animaux peuvent compenser le risque accru de prédation en modifiant les comportements qui les rendent vulnérables. Nous avons comparé dans notre étude les comportements de chant et de perchage chez des cardinaux rouges (Cardinalis cardinalis L., 1758) habitant moins de 100 m de nids de buses de Cooper (Accipiter cooperii (Bonaparte, 1828)) et chez d'autres cardinaux dans des sites témoins similaires. Les cardinaux chantent autant près des nids de buses que dans les sites témoins, mais ils le font à partir de perchoirs moins exposés lorsqu'ils sont à proximité des nids de buses de Cooper. Ces observations indiquent que, chez les cardinaux rouges, le chant fait sur un perchoir exposé est plus dangereux, mais aussi plus efficace.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2006-06-01

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  • Published since 1929, this monthly journal reports on primary research contributed by respected international scientists in the broad field of zoology, including behaviour, biochemistry and physiology, developmental biology, ecology, genetics, morphology and ultrastructure, parasitology and pathology, and systematics and evolution. It also invites experts to submit review articles on topics of current interest.
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