Fat Birds Have More Sex


Researcher Wolfgang Goymann and colleagues were studying the migrations of the garden warblers (Sylvia borin) when they discovered an interesting nugget of information:

While pockets of flab accumulated over the winter months may be a source of frustration for some, it can be a cause of joy for others …The researchers fitted ten fat birds and ten lean birds on the Italian island of Ventotene with temporary adhesive radio transmitters. […]

Monitoring their test subjects using the stick-on surveillance bugs, the German boffins found that the more rotund ones had sex sooner and generally slept only one night in any given location. Plumpness led to sexual success for the wobblebottomed group, while their spindly counterparts took longer to get any action – and tended to make longer stays of more than one night, too.



Bees Prefer Nectar With Caffeine And Nicotine


Many people feel they need a cigarette and a cup of coffee to start the day and now it turns out bees are no different. The honey-making insects prefer nectar with small amounts of nicotine and caffeine over plain nectar, researchers revealed. Flower nectar is primarily comprised of sugars, which provides energy for the potential pollinators. But the floral nectar of some plant species also includes small quantities of substances known to be toxic, such as caffeine and nicotine.The scientists from the University of Haifa examined whether the substances were intended to ‘entice’ bees or whether they were byproducts with no particular role.