Roadkill evolution

Swallows have evolved to better dodge cars, according to an article in Current Biology. They are gradually getting shorter wings, which help them fly up from the road and swerve around cars.

During a 30-year study on social behavior and coloniality of cliff swallows (Petrochelidon pyrrhonota) in southwestern Nebraska, we found that the frequency of road-killed swallows declined sharply over the 30 years following the birds’ occupancy of roadside nesting sites and that birds killed on roads had longer wings than the population at large.

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