African Honeyguides

Research on a remarkable
human-animal relationship

New research directions in the Niassa Reserve

Jun 5, 2017

David, Musaji and Claire search for Taita Falcons near Mariri Mountain

David Lloyd-Jones joins the project, travels to the Niassa Reserve with Claire, and spends the field season doing audio recordings of honey-hunts, testing out trapping methods, while also building relationships with honey-hunters for long-term data collection. Here David, Musaji and Claire search for Taita Falcons near Mariri Mountain.


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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