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Birds

Ecology and Evolutionary Biology

1992

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Capsaicin Effects On Consumption Of Food By Cedar Waxwings And House Finches.­, Donald Norman, Russell Mason, Larry Clark Jan 1992

Capsaicin Effects On Consumption Of Food By Cedar Waxwings And House Finches.­, Donald Norman, Russell Mason, Larry Clark

Larry Clark

Capsaicin effects on consumption of food by Cedar Waxwings and House Finches.­ Capsaicinoids (e.g., N-vanillyl-n-nonamide. norcapsaicin, nordihydrocapsaicin, capsaicin, dihydrocapsaicin, homocapsaicin, homodihydrocapsaicin; Hoffman 1983) are aromatic am­ ides and the pungent principles in Capsicum peppers. Although these substances are strong chemical irritants for most mammals (e.g.. Rozin et a!. 1979), the available data suggest that they are inoffensive to some birds. For example. European Starlings (Sturn us vulgaris) and Rock Doves (Columba Iivia) are unresponsive to these compounds, even when con­ centrations greatly exceed those which mammals avoid (Szolcsanyi et al. 1986; Mason et a!.. in press).