Helping out the family, especially in good times

by Rebecca on August 23, 2011

in Animal Stories

 Walter Koenig

Until they mate, acorn woodpeckers devote their time to gathering food for their relatives’ young.


Acorn woodpeckers are industrious, cooperative birds that live in family groups. Each family has several “helper” woodpeckers that do not breed. These birds devote their time to gathering acorns and other food for the young. Researchers were surprised to find that helpers are more beneficial in the spring after a good crop than in one after a poor harvest.

To read more see New York Times



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