Exceptions to the Rules

While there are many rules in nature but one rule in nature we must also remember is that there are exceptions to the rule. As a general rule in the bird world males seems to have more color than their females, this is especially true with the Sunbirds, Flowerpeckers and the Asian Fairy Bluebirds among many.

The usually explanation for these males is to be able to stand out and be seen against a backdrop of very green monotone foliage. Many birds also see in ultra violet reflection so the more vibrant  his color  are may also be a good indication of his health condition and age so she can make a good choice for her and their future young. As for the females, she usually took the camouflage colors for she had to spend more time in the nest with the eggs or her young. If she had bright colors then it would be easier for predator to spot her and endanger her young.

One exception to this rule are the Kingfisher, and here in our bay you can find 2 resident species. They are the Collared Kingfisher and The Brown-winged Kingfisher. In the case of Kingfishers the male and female are equally colorful. Why are kingfisher females colorful as well, surely she too has babies to hide?  Well she hide their young very well, usually by digging a burrow into a sandy bank or even a remnant termite nest. It is like living in a cave and a cave is always in total darkness. So her young are very well hidden and on the outside the female can be equally colorful for the same reasons like the males.

As in the case of the the birds of prey like the White-bellied Sea Eagle and Brahminy Kite found here, the male bird breaks the rule for he too like the female are not colorful. Well these are birds of prey and being a top predator and colorful would mean everyone will know that the circus is coming to town. A big disadvantage when it comes to catching prey therefore he too had to take the camouflage colors.

These are some examples or exceptions to the rule but there is one rule in nature where there is no exception to……………….

To know that answer join us on one of our nature walks and ask the guide.

Post By : Irshad Mobarak – Naturalist