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The relationship between the size of a bird and its perching behaviorFeatured science projectScience project video


The hypothesis holds true: the crow  puts a greater distance between itself and another crow when it perches on a wire. The sparrow puts a smaller distance between itself and another sparrow when perching on a wire.

Birds that sit on a power cables or telephone lines usually sit at equally spaced distances between one another. It is almost as if the birds have a way of measuring the distance between their perching neighbor. This gap is commonly referred to as the "individual distance" and it is a characteristic displayed by a few species of birds. It arises due to the territorial nature of the bird species.

Also consider

Conduct the experiment under different weather conditions (a sunny, cloudy, windy or rainy days).

Identify a different species of bird for the experiment (eg. pigeons). How does their behavior compare with that of the birds in this experiment?


What determines individual distance? -

Sparrow -

Crow -

Passerine -

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Complexity level:
Project cost ($):
Time required:
It will take an hour to set up the experiment, and 2 days for observation.
Material availability:
Look for cable lines that birds often perch on
Safety concerns: