Male crossbills develop redder feathers after they train more durable

The purple feathers of male crossbills are brighter in birds that discover it extra bodily difficult to fly, suggesting train influences plumage color


7 April 2022

Common Crossbill

Male widespread crossbill (Loxia curvirostra)


In a form of post-workout glow, male crossbills that work more durable when flying will develop redder plumage. The findings reveal that the processes that generate purple feather pigments within the birds could also be partly pushed by the revving of the metabolic engines inside cells, known as mitochondria.

Many animals purchase their vibrant colors from compounds of their food regimen. Male widespread crossbills (Loxia curvirostra) absorb yellow carotenoid pigments from their meals and use enzymes to transform the pigments into vibrant, purple ketocarotenoids, saved within the feathers.

Scientists …

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