Mysterious Beak Deformities Spreading Through Crow Population


Formerly rare beak deformities are spreading rapidly among crows in southwestern B.C. and Puget Sound, according to researchers from the U.S. Geological Survey.

The biologists observed an unusual concentration of crows with badly overgrown beaks in Alaska beginning a little over 10 years ago. According to the scientists, a capture program in 2007 and 2008 revealed that more than 16 per cent of the Alaskan crow population was afflicted, “the highest rate of gross deformities ever recorded in a wild bird population.”

“That’s about 10 to 20 times the normal rate,” said Colleen Handel, co-author of a recent article on the phenomenon published in The Auk, a scientific journal of ornithology. “Some of us who had been working in the field for a long time had never seen anything more than a scattered incidence of this kind of deformity.”

More at the Vancouver Sun

This entry was posted in General and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s