When Worms Fly: Insect larvae can survive bird guts

1:09pm, December 7, 2005

Researchers in Spain have shown a novel way for insects to travel—as larval stowaways in the guts of migrating birds.

"It's the first time insects have been shown to be carried inside birds," reports Andy J. Green of the Doñana Biological Station in Seville. He and a colleague examined droppings in a salt marsh roosting site of waterbirds called black-tailed godwits. The birds were feeding by the thousands on their way from northern breeding grounds to their winter homes in Africa.

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