Re: Tail Feathers

To: "James Davis" <>, "ozbird" <>
Subject: Re: Tail Feathers
From: "Susan Myers" <>
Date: Wed, 25 Mar 1998 18:38:00 +1100
> > close range while hidden in the swamp. I proposee that the male
> > to display the fine markings under its tail.  Why? In Zebra Finches the
> > fine streaking on the breast is used by females to ascertain the health
> > the male - any disruption of the streaking pattern indicates a problem
> > with feather development.  The same process could apply to male Cetti
> > Warblers.
Hi Jim,
On this topic, couldn't the same be said for most species? My thought would
be that most bird species rely on visual signals to a large degree and that
when a female is choosing a suitable mate she is particularly critical of
the state of the male's plumage. I believe that it is thought that sexual
selection plays a major role in the evolution of the ornate & bright
plumage seen in many birds especially Birds of Paradise, pheasants, etc.
and finches.The same would also apply to behaviour. I guess the plumage
doesn't have to be ornate in order to conjecture that sexual selection may
have influenced its evolution. Any comments?

Susan Myers
phone: +61 3 9819 2539
Email:Susan Myers 

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