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Birds line nests with cigarette butts to repel pests.

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posted on Dec, 5 2012 @ 02:59 AM
It would appear that smokers discarded cigarette butts are helping birds in cities to protect their nests against mites and other pests.

Birds living in cities seem to have adopted cigarette butts as their number one choice for protecting their nests. The nicotine and other chemicals in the cigarette butts acts as a pesticide that repels parasites.

But now birds living in cities seem to have adapted similar behaviour, filling their nests with up to 48 cigarette buts to make use of the repellent properties of tobacco.

Scientists in Mexico City studied nests of house sparrows and house finches that each contained, on average, about 10 used cigarette butts. Birds who stored larger numbers of butts saw their nests significantly less infested by mites.

Nicotine is a natural defence chemical used by the tobacco plant to ward off plant-eating insects, the researchers pointed out.

"Birds could distinguish smoked and non-smoked butts from their scent, just as some birds that use the chemical compounds of plants as defence against parasites appear to rely on olfaction to collect those with effective chemicals," the scientists wrote.

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It seems a new symbiotic relationship between smokers and birds in cities might well be possible. Next time that discarded cigarette butt might just help a little bird to protect his nest. So cheer up smokers!


posted on Dec, 5 2012 @ 03:10 AM
Saving the world one cancer stick at a time!

*lights up guilt free for once*

posted on Dec, 5 2012 @ 03:15 AM
reply to post by wingsfan

lol, Indeed mate!

Smoke a cigarette, save a bird!

Cigarette companies should put that on their packets, instead of the warnings.


posted on Dec, 5 2012 @ 03:29 AM
I sure have helped a bunch of birds out over the years. I just wonder if the butt's insulating properties has any significance to why they are used. They are made out of fiberglass just like the insulation between exterior walls. I bet it would keep those eggs warm with minimal heat loss.
edit on 5-12-2012 by geldib because: (no reason given)

posted on Dec, 5 2012 @ 03:36 AM
So this is why they are making it illegal to smoke out doors. They're trying to wipe out birds.

What possible evil intentions could these sinister fiends have, to attempt to eradicate an entire species.

Do you think the reptilians don't like birds?

Something is up!!!!!

*lights a smoke*

*doesn't even smoke*

posted on Dec, 5 2012 @ 03:37 AM
You see, even the damn bugs and birds know how bad that crap is, but us humans? Nope. Nature has much to teach us.

posted on Dec, 5 2012 @ 03:48 AM
Wonder if I could use this in court to fight a littering ticket, tossin out a butt

Cool little factoid though good sir.

posted on Dec, 5 2012 @ 10:48 AM
"Warning: Smoking has been proven to cause safer habitation for nearby poultry. Oh, and cancer"

posted on Dec, 5 2012 @ 11:35 AM
reply to post by VreemdeVlieendeVoorwep

When I was growing up my dad had us empty all his ashtrays into 5 gallon buckets about 1/3 full of water. He would let them sit for about a month, then we would scoop out the cigarette butts and pour a thin line of the water around the perimeter of the garden. It kept out bugs, snakes and rodents. My great uncle did the same around his garden.

posted on Dec, 5 2012 @ 02:47 PM
Great catch!

Is nature adapting to "us?" Perhaps....

Another link - same topic.

And yet another adaptation which "may" be happening....

Hipster bird species evolving to tune out urban sounds

I am ambivalent about the connection between smoking and people... that is a choice...

but this development may give us hope that mutual adaptation is possible despite the alien nature of human interference with the environment.


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