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Fickle Female Barn Swallows Prefer Strong Colors

According to the Cornell Lab of Ornithology’s All About Birds:

Research by Rebecca Safran indicates just how important the color of feathers can be.

Male Barn Swallows have a wash of reddish-chestnut color from their throats to their bellies. This color varies among birds from very pale red-brown to a dark rusty-red.

Female Barn Swallows pay special attention to the shade of red on the males. Even after they have paired with a male they will still comparison-shop for sexual partners. If her mate’s red breast is not as dark as that of other males in the population, the female is likely to sneak out for a secret rendezvous with another male that has darker feathers.

Source : http://www.birds.cornell.edu/AllAboutBirds/studying/feathers/

Photo Courtesy Of: captivating-animals:

Barn Swallow by www.jeroenstel.com on Flickr.