Article-2228484-15DF4790000005DC-265 634x338

Highlight: Watching this Vogelkop Bowerbird trying to woo a mate is named by Sir David Attenborough as his most enduring memory Image Credit:

Courtship display of the Satin Bowerbird02:46

Courtship display of the Satin Bowerbird

Dancers on Fire - The Sultry Dance of the Bowerbird02:25

Dancers on Fire - The Sultry Dance of the Bowerbird

A bower is a display area, built of sticks and grasses, used by a passerine bird in the Ptilonorhynchidae family.  This area is used in an elaborate courtship display.  The male bowerbird collects items with which to "decorate" his bower.  The bower is the stage for the male bowerbird's display dance (Triveldi, 2004).  

Each bird selects objects to add to their bower based on personal preference. Sometimes it is based on color, sometimes it is based on organization and sometimes it is based on what they can steal from other bowers.  Through color, sizes of collection and organization skills are attracted to particular males.

The key is that males are able to choose what they use for decorations vs. what they were born with.

Female ChoiceEdit

Younger female bowerbirds prefer males that build more elaborate bowers.  

Older female bowerbirds prefer males that perform more elaborate dances (Triveldi, 2004). 

Bowerbirds are polygynous, so the male bowerbird who performs an elaborate dance in an elaborate bower will be more likely to be more successful at mating.  

Works CitedEdit

Triveldi, B. (2004, April 14). Bowerbirds Dance, Decorate to Suit Females' Changing Tastes. National Geographic News . Retrieved October 6, 2013, from 

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