Decades ago, behavioral biologist Diane Colombelli-Negrill observed very strange behavior in the small Australian white-bellied bluebird:
When a mother incubated her eggs–when the most reasonable thing would be to be completely silent so as not to attract predators–she chose to sing to her heart’s content.
Now researchers Uncover the reason for behavior that appears inappropriate.
The researchers examined eggs from a variety of conditions by measuring the fetal heart rate inside the egg. A falling heartbeat indicates that the fetus was paying attention.
When White was exposed to her mother’s song recordings, her heart rate dropped. The same was true for the song of a relative of the species, while the song of a foreign bird had no effect on heart rate.
The conclusion is that the chicks learn to recognize their mother’s voice already in the egg. Thus, from day one, outside the egg, they can recognize the song of their own gender and sing a special “password” that tells the mother that the baby is her own and not a parasite that has invaded the nest.
As for us humans Veterinarian Dr The researchers found that the fetus could hear, for example, sounds and music in its stomach before entering the world, but that the brooding chicks could also receive the information came as a surprise to ornithologists.
Until now, it was believed that all learning about chicks begins the moment the chicks hatch from the egg.