mating plumage


Why does the bowerbird engage in such complicated, time-consuming, and exhausting mating rituals?  No one is entirely sure.  One theory is that, in contrast to species like the peacock, where the male has very distinct and visible coloration to attract mates, the bowerbird keeps its nuptial colours external, thus making it easier for the male to hide from predators.  This makes a certain amount of sense for species like the great bowerbird (lowest image), perhaps, but not for others like the regent bowerbird (center image).  Some studies suggest that it is a way for the female to judge the male’s health; the male bowerbird’s plumage and colours may indicate that he is free from internal parasites, while the bower itself may show a lack of external parasites.

Perhaps the most interesting theory, however, is that the bower may have begun as a way of preventing forced copulations, and thereby reassuring the female of her choice of mates.  During courtship by the male in the bower, the female often stands under a constructed archway or roof, thereby preventing the male from mounting her unless she moves.  Evidence for this theory is seen in different species of bowerbird;  The Archbold’s bowerbird, for instance, does not construct a true bower, but their courtship has been heavily modified so that the male cannot mount the female without her cooperation.  In contrast, the toothbilled bowerbird also does not construct a bower, and males have been seen forcibly copulating with females by attacking them in the air.

You Can Wonder [Who I Really Am]

Anonymous said:Director Sanvers prompt: maggie and Lucy find proof of Alex’s punk/goth/emo phase and tease her but are actually a little turned on when they find out she fronted a band and shows them a live concert video of their performances ???

So, posting this ask as a text so that the “read more” works properly, because this is a total beast of a fic. I dragged @onefootone​ into this one just to see what would happen. One night of brainstorming, one night of words. 6600 words. Hope it meets your expectations anon.

ps, cross-posted on Ao3 here and the mentioned based design is the green one from this post by @people-are-just-bad-code​ because damn that is a pretty piece.

“Shhhh, look,” Lucy points with her pen, “here we see the elusive Danvers, cautiously making it’s way through the grazing grounds, such a rare sight here in these parts.”

“Not much is known of the Danvers,” Maggie continues, “just that they share communal living spaces and, in theory, have a den nearby. Rarely are they seen in the wild, preferring the safety of heavily wooded areas devoid of social creatures.”

“Rarer still has the Danvers been seen in mating plumage-”

Maggie snorts and Alex, eyes flashing, throws an orange. “The Danvers can hear you, you dicks.”

Keep reading

de-aged cas having to attend school for a day and being an absolute fucking nightmare to his teachers because 

  • “actually that date is wrong”, 
  • “that’s inaccurate; jesus never said that, it was luke, and he was on hallucinogens at the time”, 
  • “yes, the t-rex did have feathers. males also competed for females by growing out mating plumage and putting their leavings in a gift-pile.”, 
  • “i’m actually not wrong, your stupid human books are wrong. the human memory is faulty, eric”, 
  • “i’ll call you whatever i want, i’ve been alive longer than your great-great-grand-parents”
  • “why are we reading the crap wordsworth wrote when there’s the great works of the famous neanderthal poet grageral???”
  • “how do you even call this an institution of knowledge, this is ridiculous”
  • “you know what, this is all pointless because your existence is so short and you’re all gonna die anyway so just stop. just stop and accept you’re wrong”
  • “fine, i’ll go to the principles office, but not because i think you have any authority over me, because i am getting out of this hell-hole. i have actually been to hell, and this is worse. it’s worse.”
Dyeing Wings

So I’ve been seriously looking into writing a story about winged characters, and one thing I’ve come across a few times is the idea of styling wings and, in particular, dyeing wings the way people dye hair. A winged character in Angela Carter’s Nights at the Circus dyes her wings.

It’s an interesting idea. Maybe large, strong wings are seen as beautiful, so people fluff their feathers up or even add extensions. Or maybe the style is to have sleek, smooth wings. Wing accessories are a possibility, kind of like hair clips. However, there’s still the concern of not messing with flight capabilities. Hands or some kind of comb or beak-like tool would be used for preening.

But of course you have to go back to the source, which in this case I’ve decided means pet sites and articles on grooming your show chicken.

Glossy feathers will probably be a big thing, because shiny means healthy. Apparently you can get this effect by wiping the feathers with a cloth or using shine spray (I guess the same kind you use on human hair). (At least, this works with show chickens.)

Dyeing might actually be a big thing among our hypothetical society of winged people, because many bird species have very colorful mating plumage for breeding season, which would make colorful feathers more desirable. When We Have Wings has a few mentions of “powder” for coloring wings. I’ve also seen people suggest paint or glitter for birds. I think one of the important things is to consider flight. You would not want to damage flying feathers. Also, some chemical hair dyes can be dangerous for small birds with their delicate respiratory systems. It might not be a problem for a human-sized being, but then again, why risk it.

People dye their birds in real life. Easter chicks are either misted with food coloring, or their eggs are injected with nontoxic dye late in incubation. 

I had no idea this was a thing. Lots of opportunity for controversy there, but teachers and researchers have also used this method in order to study feather growth or track birds. Sometimes birds dye themselves unintentionally by rubbing their heads against toys or mineral blocks containing food coloring. This color doesn’t last, as the feathers molt and are replaced by natural-colored plumage. I think this method would work best with white or pale-colored feathers (which are also weakest because they don’t contain melanin).

And then there’s dyeing via diet! Flamingo feathers are naturally grey. They turn pink because their diet of shrimp and algae includes a natural pink dye called canthaxanthin. Cardinals and goldfinches eat dogwood berries containing carotenoids, which turn their plumage red and gold. Canaries can turn dark orange if they eat foods with carotenoids like paprika, cayenne or red pepper. I believe there’s also bird food you can buy that includes carotenoids. You can “color-feed” a canary by giving them these foods right before a molt, which causes their new feathers to come in red or orange. So a winged humanoid could probably go on a diet containing natural dyes right before their molt. Other foods with carotenoids are carrots and pumpkins. However, this also works on human skin, so the end result could be a winged humanoid with lovely red feathers who looks like she has jaundice.

Blue feathers are different. They don’t contain blue pigment – they get their color because of the way they scatter light. This is called structural coloration, which also creates iridescent feathers. If you crush a feather from a bluejay, it won’t look blue anymore.

Also, birds don’t perceive color quite the way humans do, so depending on how avian an avian-human hybrid is, I could be dealing with a much wider spectrum. All food for thought.

man reverse!verses are practically my summoning spell because like 

  • sam having gigantic, fluffy, chocolate-coloured wings that he cocoons around gabriel and himself when they’re all sleepy and cuddly 
  • gabriel, despite his small stature, being one of the best hunters around–fast, with an acute ability to bullshit his way out of almost anything 
  • dean having beautiful, white feathers with golden tips the same colour as his hair–and no matter what he does, they’re always a little ruffled 
  • cas never quite getting over just how ethereally angelic dean is, even when his wings are hidden–more importantly, cas waxing poetic about the light just behind dean’s eyes and the constellations of freckles mapped across his body and deAN ENDING UP HIDING HIS FACE WITH HIS WINGS TO CONCEAL HIS BLUSH 
  • sam and dean’s mating plumage is very important
  • to continue on the very important last point, sam and dean getting all puffed up and flirty during mating season and peacocking around because, even if they’ve already got mates, they can’t help but try make cas and gabe swoon all over again
  • (gabriel giving sam an easter egg at the end of the whole thing with the announcement “IM PREGNANT, SAMMY” to tease him about being half pigeon) 
  • dean teaching cas enochian so he understands all the blessings and praise the angel whispers against his skin when they’re together
  • gabriel asking to be taught enochian so he and sam can dirty talk in public
  • castiel and dean looking absolutely mortified when they do that for the first time
  • dean and sam being angels
  • cas and gabe being hunters
  • give me all the reverse!verse give it to me 

innsmouth-looker  asked:

your bird creatures are really cool! i don't think you need to worry too hard about feasible biology... even today we don't have explanations for a lot of biological things in HUMANS, right? that being said, are they carnivorous or omnivorous? how are babies made/and or raised? are there any other special anatomical things about them that you could tell us about?

yeah like SINUSES????
But anyways, They’re omnivores! Though some show a stronger preference to meat than others…like. Snowbirds would probably be considered carnivores with how much meat they eat, fishers eat, well a ton of fish. The inlanders and desert birds benefit most from getting more non-meat foods, i think..
But yeah! 
Also I havent thought it entirely through yet, but I know there’s going to be a particular form of life that is..somewhere between plant and animal? that would probably be a staple in inlander diets, though I wouldnt know how to classify em haha
But yeah..omnivores

BABIES…well when two birds love eachother very much…
I havent decided if there are like, mating seasons or anything (and therefore mating season ~plumage~ heh), and i’m.. well i’m in the process of reworking their junk a bit. but the system is a lil different than ours, it’s sort of reversed? like.. the female bits take reproductive material from the male rather than the male giving it, u feel?
Babies come out as EGGS!! usually only one or two, rather large, eggs. When they hatch they’re around like..toddler functionality

how they’re raised depends on what sort of society theyre in! 
there are the three large and influential peoples (those nearest the gods) and it’s a little different for all. 
The desert birds around Ma’Ulob probably have a tendency for the sort of. large extended family sort of thing, very close with big fams. raising babies as a fam, cozy cozy.

Snowbirds around Atma i think have something more least one parent and their child living away from fam on their own, sort of thing. at least 2 parents is /preferred/ though, for the sake of being able to balance work and child rearing. Probably common for any single parent to have help raising a little chick with a friend, ditching a partner is very frowned upon, i imagine

War birds (this is generally a mix of fishers and inlanders) around Svatku..have it totally different. Parents have little to do with their children, eggs are brought to these nursery things where caretakers look after them, and once they hatch, all these little babies..basically live together at School and are raised by teachers. Lineage is really only kept track of in order to avoid inbreeding. So families usually end up being close groups of friends, and teacher figures, rather than anything decided by blood.

Oh also they do lay like, unfertilized eggs. It’s not usually considered weird to eat these. Give one to your friend, make an omelette.
Eating a fertile one. however. is bad that is a very bad thing in civilized bird societies.

pixiedust291  asked:

Gabriel, where do baby angels come from? I've read several different thing about angel speculated biology. Some sources say you guys mate for life and use you wings during sex. The SPN shows indicates you guys have numerous relationships, when you dated Kali for example, and that male and female angels can have sex. Though it also speculates that god made all angels... so can angels have babies and what exactly are their mating habits? You guys obviously aren't picky of gender and can be kinky.

…So, basically, you’re asking for The Talk: Angel Edition?

Look, kid, you gotta remember two things before we get into any of the nitty-gritty: one, us angels don’t necessarily have a fixed gender. Like, yeah, sure, we may have a preference, but a lot of it’s dependent on the gender of the vessel we choose. Take Raphi for example—didn’t he suddenly grow a rack somewhere along the line? 

Numero dos: I ain’t your standard angel—for a couple thousand years, I was even trying to be the polar opposite. As much as I liked Kali, it’s not exactly the norm for us to go chasing tail in religions outside our own.

Now for your other questions. Wings… eh, they’re more of a kinky thing, if I’m honest. They’re not sex organs or anything—but they can be, uh, stimulated, if you wanna bring ‘em into it.

As for Daddyo—yep, he made a good few of us: me and the other archangels, Metadouche, the seraphim… you get the gist. But, obviously, since we have mating plumage—yes, even the girls—taking the hotdog bus to taco town is occasionally suggested to keep our numbers up. ‘Course, it’s more of a chore than anything else when you haven’t got a vessel—you try getting your rocks off while existing as a multidimensional wavelength of celestial intent and see how you like it. Worst sex you’ll ever have. 

Some of us do find mates for life, but not all. Most don’t even want to, in case they fall in love with a human or some other mortal creature. Losing a mate is…

Well. Let’s not get into that. 

Bleach characters, you just learned that Kurotsuchi and Shutara are dating! What is your reaction?

As requested by anon. :)

Urahara: So Kurotsuchi *likes* it when people break into his office?

Urahara: Yet he seemed so mad when *I* broke in!

Urahara: Weird.

Unohana: I have often suspected that Kurotsuchi Mayuri is the type of man who likes it when people challenge and overcome him.

Unohana: A bit of a masochist, that man.

Sentoki: Works out well. Shutara is such a sadist.

Unohana: What a romantic story.

Sentoki: Yup, I’m sure they and their many devices will have a lot of…fun.

Renji: Shutara is good at, um, persuading people to get naked.

Renji: She might actually see what Kurotsuchi is like under all that makeup!

Byakuya: Is that something you have - often wondered about, Renji?

Renji: …

Renji: I-I’m pretty sure everyone has wondered!

Ishida: Both of them have mechanical limbs and who knows what other…things hiding in their bodies.

Ishida: It literally makes me SICK to contemplate what they might get up to.

Nnoitra: Yeah, you know what they say about people who have many arms.

Tesla: They make the best lovers!

Nnoitra: No, Tesla, you rotten pumpkin guts!

Nnoitra: They make the best FIGHTERS

Nnoitra: Shutara is super going to kill that Kurotsuchi guy. I’m calling it now.

Akon: After all these years, the captain is finally dating, huh?

Akon: I guess that daisy headdress of his really does attract the ladies.

Akon: Like some sort of mating plumage, I guess.

Akon: Good for him.

Nemu: With Shutara’s excellent sewing skills, perhaps Mayuri-sama will get a new headdress out of the relationship.

Nemu: I believe that might make him happy.

Szayel: Yeah, and maybe it will be full of those deadly needles that Shutara sometimes uses!!!

Nemu: You have a strange idea of how a relationship works.

Szayel: I can dream.

Why it's good that hollows don't have a mating season

Hollow mating season requested by anon. :)

Can you imagine if the espada and other hollows went into heat for some sort of hollow mating system? That would be terrible. So very terrible. And here are a list of reasons why.

  1. Because nobody wants to see Aaroniero’s tentacle mating dance. Nobody.

  2. Because Ulquiorra wouldn’t understand the feelings. And this would make him sad.

  3. And he would go around asking everyone what “these peculiar urges” mean. This would be uncomfortable for all involved

  4. Except for Szayel. Who would give Ulquiorra the sex talk.

  5. And then Ulquiorra would be more confused.

  6. But he wouldn’t want to admit his confusion to Yammy, who would be following him around, asking him delicate questions.

  7. And growing ever more angry.

  8. But just - unable to understand why.

  9. Because Szayel would try extra hard to seduce Gin.

  10. Mating plumage plumage would be involved. Homemade mating plumage.

  11. And the mating plumage would be poisonous to the touch.

  12. So it would be a bad week for Gin.

  13. Because nobody wants to get an orgy invitation card from Luppi.

  14. Except maybe Gin.

  15. But two people does not an orgy make.

  16. Still a bad week for Gin.

  17. Because Nnoitra’s aggression would be even more heightened. 

  18. Basically, he’d go the Kal-if-fee route of Pon Farr.

  19. So it would be a bad week for Tesla too.

  20. Because Barragan.

  21. Because Zommari would just meditate his way through it. And, um, that would be boring.

  22. Because Starrk would feel his loneliness even more deeply.

  23. Well either that or he’d just masturbate a lot.

  24. While crying.

  25. Because Grimmjow would just get so mad about Tosen spraying him with the spray bottle.

  26. I mean, he was just humping the furniture a little.

  27. Because Halibel would never come to work. Too busy having sex with her beautiful fracciones.

  28. Wait, hang on, that would be awesome.

  29. So I guess it wouldn’t be all bad.

King Bird-of-Paradise (Cicinnurus regius)

by Daniel Giraud Elliot

The King bird-of-paradise is the smallest of the Paradisaeidae family. It is also common and widespread in the lowland forests of Papau New Guinea.

On my university’s online library catalogue, nearly all the scientific articles about this species relate to its mating displays and plumage, showing how fascinated Homo sapiens are with the more spectacular aspects of nature.

Not too distant from that topic, the Cicinnurus regius is also featured in a 2009 article about the slow rate of speciation in birds-of-paradise, which contrasts with previous assumptions that sexually-selected traits (such as displays of colour and movement) evolve rapidly.


Birds of Paradise

So I decided a while back that I really wanted all the bird Rahi of Mata Nui to take after birds-of-paradise in some way. The birds-of-paradise of New Guinea and other islands are amazing in their colors and the strange shapes they’ve evolved into via sexual selection. I loved the idea of the Taku and Goko-Kahu and Kahu, though modeled on hawks and eagles, also having features like extravagant mating plumage and ridiculously long and poofy tail feathers and such, since Mata Nui is such an isolated, paradisiacal location. For now, here’s a Taku and a Kewa/Goko-Kahu—I’ve been working on a Kahu for a while but haven’t been at home long enough to finish it in years. I’ll post it eventually.

Flickr for more, as always.

And Bryan: hold your horses.