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Cuckoos and cheating

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The sight of a little warbler feeding a huge cuckoo chick has astonished human observers for thousands of years. Why are the hosts apparently being so stupid? I show how field experiments can unravel the stages of the evolutionary arms race between cuckoo and host and compare the cuckoo’s tactics with other cheats from around the world. The talk will be illustrated with film clips of host defence and cuckoo trickery.

This talk is part of the Pembroke Papers, Pembroke College series.

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