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  THE BIRDCAGE

These Gay Birds May Be Together Longer Than You And Your Current Lover

While humans may disagree on whether to embrace monogamy or open relationships, Zebra Finches prefer monogamy for life. And when raised in all-male groups, researchers at the University of California in Berkeley found that over half of the males nest up with other males, even going so far as to ignore females once they’re introduced to the group—”Talk to the wing, gurl. I gotta man.”

The male-male Zebra Finch couples nest together, sing to each other, regularly perch side by side, and greet one another just like opposite-sex couples do. The researchers theorize that the birds form same-sex pairs in order to ensure their survival. And while it’s unwise to infer things about human relationships from the animal kingdom, it’s still interesting to think what this means for students who go to all-boys or all-girls school or the coupling of same-sex pairs in human cages, err, prison.

By:           Daniel Villarreal
On:           Aug 16, 2011
Tagged: ,

  • 17 Comments
    • MikeE
      MikeE

      Unless these finches can live considerably longer than 10 years, which is unlikely (5 years is the general consensus on life expectancy of finches), your headline is rather fucked up and insulting.

      Honestly, THIS is one of those incredibly stupid moments where Queerty has removed one foot from its figurative mouth only to replace it by the other foot, along with a good portion of its shoe collection.

      Aug 16, 2011 at 1:37 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • rascal
      rascal

      Well, there’s two words I never thought I’d say today: zebra and finches.

      Aug 16, 2011 at 1:43 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • adam
      adam

      The quotes from the scientist in the article says “socially monogamous” rather than “sexually monogamous”. That probably means that, as scientists have discovered about other pair bond for life birds like lovebirds, couples slut around constantly having quickie sex with lots of other random birds but continue to nest with each other through the years.

      Aug 16, 2011 at 1:51 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Daniel Villarreal
      Daniel Villarreal

      @MikeE: I actually agree with you on this one—LTRs RAWK—and have changed “Will” to “May.” Thanks for your input.

      Aug 16, 2011 at 2:03 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • David Gervais
      David Gervais

      Daniel V: The photo you have used is of a hetero couple from wikipedia, the same as used on another site.
      Try using: File:Taeniopygia guttata – front view – dundee wildlife park.jpg which is of a single male until you find a better pic.

      Aug 16, 2011 at 3:36 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • David Gervais
      David Gervais

      I found a photo with two male finches at:
      http://www.avianweb.com/images/birds/finch/zebrafinches.jpg

      Aug 16, 2011 at 3:48 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • rascal
      rascal

      @David Gervais: You actually went looking for that photo. Really? I mean REALLY??

      Aug 16, 2011 at 3:58 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Daniel Villarreal
      Daniel Villarreal

      @David Gervais: Much thanks, David. We have replaced the hetero pic with yours of authentically gay Zebra Finches—homosexual birdz prepresent!

      Aug 16, 2011 at 4:11 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • David Gervais
      David Gervais

      @rascal usually I don’t complain about something unless I can offer a solution. If you look at the time stamps foor comments 5 & 6, It took me 12 minutes, including time for a coffee refill and playing with cut and paste.

      Aug 16, 2011 at 4:18 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • David Gervais
      David Gervais

      Oops- typo by me too. We really need to get behind the suggestion (in the feedback section) to create an edit-my-post function.

      Aug 16, 2011 at 4:21 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Dr. Dick
      Dr. Dick

      I think it’s perfectly healthy to take a few pointers from the animal kingdom (which, of course, taxonimically we pertain to as well)

      Aug 16, 2011 at 4:38 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Dr. Dick
      Dr. Dick

      *taxonomically, yeesh!

      Aug 16, 2011 at 4:38 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Ryan K
      Ryan K

      @Dr. Dick: Agreed! Since we are animals, it is entirely wise to make inferences and comparisons to other animal relationships. Brain chemistry and social structures can be comparable, though I’d prefer to make comparisons within our own order, since they would be more applicable. Nematodes are animals, too, but I doubt we could learn very much about pair bonding from nematode studies!

      Aug 16, 2011 at 7:51 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Sebizzar
      Sebizzar

      Haha awww, my sister’s & i used to own a lot of finch birds, one pair eventually had eggs & we watched them grow up it was so cute :) Maybe 2 male finch’s could raise eggs together :P

      Aug 16, 2011 at 10:25 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • David Gervais
      David Gervais

      Sebizzar: Maybe 2 male finch’s could raise eggs together :P

      You reminded me of Roy and Silo who raised Tango at the NY Zoo.
      See:
      And Tango Makes Three
      Richardson, Justin
      ISBN: 0689878451

      It is available in several languages.

      Aug 16, 2011 at 11:45 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • David Gervais
      David Gervais

      Oops, typo again. Daniel V., you can laugh at me now.

      Aug 17, 2011 at 12:25 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • nineinchnail
      nineinchnail

      21 years here!!!!

      Aug 17, 2011 at 10:59 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·

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