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Big, insect-feeding birds are disappearing and their demise may be due to the decline in the populations of big nutritious insects. In a new study, bird specimens preserved in museums provide clues to solve this tragic ecological mystery.
By contrasting the chemical composition of museum specimens with the composition of living whip-poor-wills, researchers could extrapolate how the birds used to eat. Their troubling finding: there seems to be a lot fewer big bugs than there used to be.
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