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1 December 2013 Interspecific Parental Care by a Wood Thrush (Hylocichla mustelina) at a Nest of the Veery (Catharus fuscescens)
Matthew R. Halley, Christopher M. Heckscher
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Reports of interspecific parental behavior are rare but widespread among avian taxa. We present the first known case of interspecific parental care by a Wood Thrush (Hylocichla mustelina) at a nest of the Veery (Catharus fuscescens), documented by video at a long-term study site in northern Delaware, USA. We provide data on nest chronology, quantify parental behavior, and describe a copulation event between the Wood Thrush and the female Veery that was captured on video. Despite incurring no obvious fitness benefit, the Wood Thrush provided significant and prolonged nestling care including more feeding attempts and sanitation maneuvers than either Veery. We propose that these observations are a consequence of the normal adaptive behavior of the recipient species.

2013 by the Wilson Ornithological Society
Matthew R. Halley and Christopher M. Heckscher "Interspecific Parental Care by a Wood Thrush (Hylocichla mustelina) at a Nest of the Veery (Catharus fuscescens)," The Wilson Journal of Ornithology 125(4), 823-828, (1 December 2013).
Received: 27 March 2013; Accepted: 1 July 2013; Published: 1 December 2013

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