Drongo African Bird Mimics Sounds of 51 Other Animals to Seize Food
It seems interesting that forked tailed drongo bird of Africa imitates warning calls of multiple species to scare other animals and steal their food. Usually, these birds use their own danger alert to trick their fellow bird to abandon a meal. These tricky African birds have a god gifted feature of producing sounds of many species in nature which cannot be produced by any other creature.
Drongo birds have been characterized as demonic little black birds with red eyes a hooked beak and a forked tail.
On analyzing 64 drongos over the course of 847 hours, researchers discovered that drongo birds can mimic sounds of 51 other birds and mammals including the mongoose and jackal. Due to this tendency of birds to mock up sounds of so many creatures, animals cannot identify own false alerts of the bird.
Researchers found that the birds were able to steal 25% of the food abandoned by the animals they fooled to flee. They declared these birds as the pathological liar of the animal kingdom.
Tom Flower, a biologist at the University of Cape Town in South Africa, said that if the bird fails to make fool of an animal by mimicking one sound, it switches to sound of another species in repertory. Flower along with his colleagues recorded 688 attempts of the drongo birds to grab its food from other animals.
"Drongo birds are highly aggressive and are renowned for attacking eagles and hawks for which they apparently have no fear", said Flower. The research has been conducted by researchers in the Kuruman River Reserve in the Kalahari Desert.