PROGRAM: "How Birds Make Colorful Feathers, and Why it Matters"

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Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Chad M. Eliason, "How Birds Make Colorful Feathers, and Why it Matters".  In addition to flight, birds must use their feathers to keep warm, stay dry, hide from predators and attract mates. Colorful signals, like the tail eyespots of a peacock, are among the most diverse traits in nature, and several groups of birds differ only in their plumage colors. Inspired by this dazzling array of colors, Chad Eliason from the Field Museum uses a combination of physics and modern comparative methods to tackle pressing questions in biology, including: How do birds produce colorful signals? What do other birds see in a signal? and What are the forces driving changes in color through time?