Colour preferences in nest-building zebra finches

Felicity Muth, Matthew Steele, Susan D. Healy*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Some bird species are selective in the materials they choose for nest building, preferring, for example, materials of one colour to others. However, in many cases the cause of these preferences is not clear. One of those species is the zebra finch, which exhibits strong preferences for particular colours of nest material. In an attempt to determine why these birds strongly prefer one colour of material over another, we compared the preferences of paired male zebra finches for nest material colour with their preferences for food of the same colours. We found that birds did indeed prefer particular colours of nest material (in most cases blue) but that they did not generally prefer food of one colour over the other colours. It appears, then, that a preference for one colour or another of nest material is specific to the nest-building context. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: insert SI title. (C) 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)106-111
Number of pages6
JournalBehavioural Processes
Volume99
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2013

Keywords

  • Nest building
  • Nest material
  • Colour preference
  • EUROPEAN STARLINGS
  • GREEN PLANTS
  • BIRD NESTS
  • EXPERIENCE
  • NESTLINGS
  • GUTTATA

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