One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A New World songbird with dark plumage and a relatively short bill, typically laying its eggs in other birds' nests.
Genus Molothrus (and Scaphidura), family Icteridae: several species, in particular the widespreadbrown-headed (or common) cowbird (M. ater)
- ‘Open land provides habitat for cowbirds and nest predators.’
- ‘We observed live female cowbirds at sparrow nests on 12 occasions; 11 of these were laying bouts.’
- ‘The probability of parasitism may vary among hosts because differences in their behaviors assist cowbirds in locating nests.’
- ‘Instead of our winter visitors that left us for more northern areas, we now have grackles, red-wings and cowbirds.’
- ‘Cuckoos and cowbirds lay eggs in nests of different species to avoid the costs of brood care.’
- ‘In British Columbia, nearly 25% of Veery nests found had been parasitized by cowbirds.’
- ‘While female cowbirds don't sing, male cowbirds belt out a small repertory of songs, each one less than a second long.’
- ‘Blackbirds, cowbirds, and mockingbirds are common companions throughout most of the year.’
- ‘Rothstein said that since most songbirds only sing, he suspects the cowbirds learned to sing before they started to dance.’
- ‘This fracturing allows birds of the forest edge, such as cowbirds and blue jays, to parasitize and prey upon the thrushes.’
- ‘The only characteristic that separated parasitic cowbirds from their nonparasitic relatives was an increase in eggshell thickness.’
- ‘Estimating the cost of accepting a cowbird egg was done by experimentally placing newly hatched cowbird chicks into catbird nests.’
- ‘Warbling Vireo nests that are parasitized by cowbirds typically produce no vireo young.’
- ‘Cowbird visits usually occurred after the host left the nest, suggesting that cowbirds monitored nests closely.’
- ‘Our findings suggest that cowbirds are relatively long lived and that recruitment into the breeding population is low.’
- ‘In Missouri, sparrows and cowbirds arrived at nests at 13.5 and 14.7 min before sunrise, respectively.’
- ‘Incubation time is short, 10 to 12 days, which allows the young cowbird to get a head start in the nest.’
- ‘Since 1972, decoy traps baited with seeds and live cowbirds have been set out across the warbler's breeding grounds.’
- ‘Chaffinches and cowbirds are not the only birds that teach song to their young.’
- ‘Studies have revealed that as many as 90 percent of the vireo nests in Texas and Oklahoma have been invaded by cowbirds.’
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