How monk parakeets pick their battles

From Audubon.org, Sept. 10, 2015:

Remember middle school? Well . . . maybe you don’t want to. It turns out, humans aren’t the only ones who go through agonizing rounds of teasing and torment to find their place in the pack. Other primates and mammals create social hierarchies, too, as do fish, hermit crabs, and birds.

A study published today in PLOS Computational Biology shows how one species of bird forms its pecking orders. The researchers focused on the Monk Parakeet, a bright green South American native that has invaded parts of the southern and eastern United States over the last 40 years. More…

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