RFI: Avian vocal mimicry whilst banding.

To: "birding aus" <>
Subject: RFI: Avian vocal mimicry whilst banding.
From: "Philip A Veerman" <>
Date: Sun, 16 Aug 1998 23:35:17 +1000
I wonder whether people (especially banders) have some observations to share
on the odd phenomenon of birds indulging in bouts of vocal mimicry whilst
being handled for banding (or any other purpose). I have heard of thornbills
giving outbursts of all sorts of vocal mimicry (of other birds) in this
situation. It is hard to imagine what is going on in their head at the time.
Or should I say, it is hard to see any adaptive significance in this
behaviour. My interest began out of the investigation of the Regent
Honeyeater's vocal mimicry, although that is a quite different issue. Can
anyone out there contribute any observations to see if this issue is worth
pursueing? As Australian birds seem to be the masters of vocal mimicry, as
distinct from the rest of the world, maybe information from outside
Australia would be interesting too.

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