From breaking through the eggshell as a feeble chick to finally taking to the air, young birds face a variety of dangers and threats to their survival – but they don't face them alone. In most species, both parents oversee the development of their offspring, using an astonishing range of strategies.
Eggs, Chicks and Fledglings takes as its starting point the time when courtship ends and the hard work of raising chicks begins. Using the framework of the chick's development, from inside the egg through to fledging from the nest, Eggs, Chicks and Fledglings explores how birds raise their offspring. Eggs, Chicks and Fledglings provides an informed overview of both avian development and the evolution and ecology of parental care. It has great appeal both to the specialist reader as an accessible introduction to the latest research in the field, and to the generalist reader interested in learning more about bird behaviour and the natural history of family life in birds. Chapters look at the natural history of mating systems, cooperative breeding, nest-building, the biology of eggs, clutch size, incubation and brooding, hatching and imprinting, chick provisioning, survivorship, parent-offspring and sibling conflicts, and fledging.
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Sean Rands is an evolutionary biologist based in Long Ashton, Somerset, and a rising star in the biological sciences. Following his doctorate in theoretical biology, Sean conducted postdoctoral research at the University of Cambridge, where his studies covered topics as diverse as social foraging in baboons and the evolution of tail streamers in swallows. Sean is currently Lecturer in Animal Behaviour and Welfare at the University of Bristol, and is Ecology Editor of the online science journal PLoS ONE.
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