Birds love soaking in the sun as much as humans do

August 19th, 2009 - 5:16 pm ICT by ANI  

London, Aug 19 (ANI): Its not just humans who enjoy soaking up in the sun on the beach, for birds are fond of sunbathing too, according to the bird charity RSPB.

The charity revealed that they receive almost 100 calls during hot spells from people who are concerned with watching birds lying with their feathers and wings exposed to the sun.

However, they have said that such state of rest is not problematic, as the animals simply sunbath in this position.

Studies from the University of New Mexico have suggested that birds sun themselves to soothe their skin after heavy rain, which can cause them to suddenly lose their feathers.

The researchers believe that the sun helps straighten the birds’ feathers, and helps the preen oil to spread through.

“People become concerned about these birds, because they seem to have a glazed expression in their eyes, because they are not focusing on anything, because they are entranced by the sun,” the Telegraph quoted Gemma Rogers from the RSPB as saying.

She added: “They don’t let themselves overheat at all. The feathers would protect them as well, so I don’t think they need the factor 30.”

However, the biggest concern, according to her, is that the predators will attack while the birds enjoy a peaceful moment in the sun.

“They are on the ground, they have their heads up, their legs wide open, but usually they fly away once a predator approaches. Their hearing is very acute as well, so even if they aren’t focusing they will hear something coming,” she said.

While blackbirds are the most commonly spotted sunbathers, pigeons and sparrows also enjoy the sun.

Rogers said that sparrows apparently enjoy going to the beach as much as humans.

“Sparrows often find a hot sandy area as well to have a sand or dust bath. That looks really strange. They bed themselves down and get in there and cover their feathers,” she said. (ANI)

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