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Still Waters

Sparrows change their tune to be heard in

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Sparrows in San Francisco's Presidio district changed their tune to soar above the increasing cacophony of car horns and engine rumbles, details new George Mason University research in the April edition of Animal Behaviour.

The study, "Birdsongs Keep Pace with City Life: Changes in Song Over Time in an Urban Songbird Affects Communication," compares birdsongs from as far back as 1969 to today.The researchers also detail how San Francisco's streets have grown noisier based on studies from 1974 and 2008.

Just as we raise our voices to be heard when a car speeds past, birds making their homes near busy intersections have to tweet a little louder, Luther says. But it's more than just whistling the same tune and turning up the volume. Most birds stopped singing some old songs because those ditties couldn't cut through the racket.

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Well that puts to rest the silly idea that bird-brains are tiny to insignificant. Maybe the size of your brain has nothing to do with intelligence after all.:yes:

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Q. Has anyone seen sparrows outside of a city? I am being serious, I live in a suburb adjacent to a long strip city. Not one block from my home you can see sparrows all day long (in the city). Yet one block away (in the suburbs) I never see them, not in decades of living here. The same goes for pigeons as well. Crows are almost always associated with man also, but here they can be found in both the city and suburbs, perhaps because them seem to prefer not to nest in the city.

I believe sparrows were originally Iranian or at least Middle Eastern but have been transported to virtually every place man goes, apparently on purpose.

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