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Food Color In Birds

Submitted by malberigi on Thu, 04/19/2018 - 22:17

Food color preference of avian foragers has not been widely studied.  In North America, the most common fruit color of bird-dispersed plants are red and black.  Other preferential fruit colors include blue and purple, while orange and green are rarely chosen (Janson 1983).  Fruit colors are commonly considered to increase the conspicuousness of ripe fruit in order to attract birds to disperse the enclosed seeds.  The preference of fruit color in avian foragers may be due to a variety of factors including background color, the prevalence of one color, and nutritional value associated with certain colors.  In our study, we would examine food color preferences of bird species in areas of the Amazon rainforest that are in need of ecological restoration. Frugivorous birds may play an important role in the restoration process due to their efficiency in seed dispersal (Gagetti, B L, et al, 1996).  We hope to direct the selection of plants that produce certain fruit colors to aid in the restoration of degraded forests