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Re: nest predation

John Bois wrote:
> On Fri, 29 May 1998, Pat Grant (Library: Serials Catalog wrote:
> > If the unwilling
> > foster parents had thrown out the alien egg, or otherwise failed to
> > take care of the young parasite, the visiting absentee parents would
> > trash the nest and kill any other young in it.
> Fascinating!  Therefore the cowbird is selecting for good parenthood in
> another species, i.e., offspring with genes for parenting of cowbird young
> will survive at a higher rate than those whose parents evict the
> parasites.

A supplementary study which might be interesting would be to see how often
cowbirds and related species parasitize the same parents.  After all, those
parents have to reproduce to pass their genes along, and IIRC the cowbird
nestling usually kills off the foster parents' blood offspring.Are the
cowbirds serial parasitizers, I wonder?