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A warbler's flashy yellow throat? There are genes for that

19:00 EST 7 Nov 2017 | AAAS

(University of British Columbia) Birds get their bright red, orange and yellow plumage from carotenoid pigments -- responsible for many of the same bright colours in plants. But how songbirds turn carotenoids into the spectacular variety of feathered patches found in nature has remained a mystery. Now University of British Columbia (UBC) research might have pinpointed some of the genetic machinery responsible for the plumage coloration in Audubon's and myrtle warblers, related but distinctly feathered North American songbirds.

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