African Honeyguides

Research on a remarkable
human-animal relationship

An intense dry season of fieldwork at Niassa

Sep 10, 2016

Red-over-red - 2015

Claire and the honey-hunter team spend six weeks at Niassa capturing and radio-tracking honeyguides, and carrying out behavioural experiments. “Red-over-red” sports his radio antenna with poise.


New paper on human-honeyguide cooperation and communication

A new study from the Honeyguide Research Project shows that Greater Honeyguides learn the distinct calls that honey-hunters in different parts of Africa use to communicate with them, facilitating cooperation between species. Human honey-hunters signal to honeyguides using specialised calls that vary culturally across Africa. The new study shows using field experiments in Mozambique and Tanzania that honeyguides prefer the specialised calls of the local human culture they interact with, compared to those of a foreign culture. This implies that honeyguides can adjust to human cultural diversity, increasing the benefits of cooperation for both people and birds.

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