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1 December 2005 Dunking Behavior in American Crows
Julie Morand-Ferron
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Dunking behavior, the immersion of food items in water, is a relatively rare behavior in birds. I observed American Crows (Corvus brachyrhynchos) dunking several types of food in rain puddles at Mont-Royal Park, Montréal, Québec, Canada. Pieces of dry bread and unshelled peanuts were provided in two experiments to test the potential effects of item size (bread) and shell softening (peanuts) on crow behavior. Crows dunked large pieces of bread more often than small ones. Dunking unshelled peanuts did not speed up the opening process. These observations further support the suggestion that food dunking among birds facilitates food ingestion by softening large, hard items.

Julie Morand-Ferron "Dunking Behavior in American Crows," The Wilson Bulletin 117(4), 405-407, (1 December 2005).
Received: 3 November 2004; Accepted: 1 July 2005; Published: 1 December 2005
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