I’m writing from a beautiful karri forest in Western Australia, where I’ve been doing some fieldwork on red-winged fairy wrens for the last couple of months!
Red-winged fairy wrens are, like most fairy wren species, cooperative breeders: offspring will remain on a territory with their parents for a number of years and help to defend and feed new offspring. I’ve been collecting data on how parents and helpers of different sexes respond to offspring demand, how mothers adjust their response based on who is in their group, and whether offspring respond differently to male and female adults in their begging. More on this research soon!
In the meantime I’m enjoying finishing up a great field season – more to follow!