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Mosaic evolution painted lorikeets a rainbow of color


PhysOrg
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A new study examines how color evolved in one of the flashiest groups of parrots—Australasian lorikeets—finding that different plumage patches on the birds evolved independently through time. The study, published this week in the journal BMC Evolutionary Biology, helps explain why it's possible for the birds' faces and front sides to display a dazzling variety of colors—from vibrant ultraviolet blue only visible to other birds to deep crimson and black—while their wings and backs tend to be the same color: green.

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