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Still Waters

Rare bird has pang of conscience

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Still Waters

In a tragic chain of events a male chough – an endangered species – scared off his rival in the battle over territory.

When the younger bird vanished his partner, who had been incubating their eggs, “pined to death”, it is feared, leaving their hatching young to fend for themselves.

The victorious lone male, perhaps feeling a pang of guilt, took on the role of foster father and single-handedly reared the chicks, feeding them grubs and teaching them how to fly.

He took care of them in the clifftop nest for three weeks till they were big and strong enough to fend for themselves. It is believe that it is the first time behaviour of this kind has been recorded in the species.


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