Twittering sparrows are actually swapping insults

August 12th, 2011 - 11:48 pm ICT by IANS  

London, Aug 12 (IANS) The twittering of sparrows can be uplifting for those who are feeling low, but mind you, the birds are actually swapping insults.

Their cheerful sounds have a lot of similarities with rappers’ profane bragging and is all about impressing females and proving their masculinity.

Their ’singing’ performances become louder and more aggressive in a bid to outdo rivals, says a study conducted by Canadian researchers, the journal Behavioural Ecology and Sociobiology reports.

Janet Lapierre, from the University of Western Ontario, who led the study, said song-sharing, which involves males singing only their ‘greatest hits,’ is “an aggressive behaviour akin to flinging insults back and forth,” according to the Daily Mail.

Sparrows living in more competitive environments are more likely to perform aggressively. This was like trying harder to prove themselves in a tough neighbourhood, said the researchers.

Those living in less competitive environments are more likely to sing their own songs rather than compete with other males by singing the same songs as them, the study added

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