Just Like Humans, Crows Embrace Junk Food…and Pay the Price

By Allison Bond | June 9, 2009 3:10 pm

crows like french friesHigh in calories but low in nutrition, junk food isn’t exactly optimal fuel for kids. And, it turns out, it’s not the best for baby crows, either.

A steady diet of scavenged discarded doughnuts and French fries has had deleterious effects on crow chicks in suburban areas, according to researchers at Binghamton University. The urban crows are smaller and have lower levels of blood protein and calcium than chicks living in rural areas, the study found.

When the scientists offered some of the suburban crows a concoction more nutritious than the junk food plentiful in suburban garbage cans—but not as nourishing as the crows’ natural diet—the suburban chicks grew faster than those still on the junk food-based diet. The rural parents also chose to feed their chicks the scientists’ mixture over natural food, indicating that crows might feed their chicks whatever food is easiest to get, even if it’s less nutritious.

The difference between crows and humans, of course, is that human parents know that junk food is bad for their kids. Crows are scavengers, and they’ll take whatever food they can get. What’s our excuse?

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Image: flickr / greg7

MORE ABOUT: crows, health, junk food
  • http://shop.brandsuper.com Nike Kobe IV

    The rural parents also chose to feed their chicks the scientists’ mixture over natural food,good!

  • QUASAR

    Ah, that junk food stuff is really bad for your health!

  • Pingback: Junk Food Making Crows Sick « OrganicAuthority.com – Organic Blog()

  • Pingback: Small Comfort: Cockroaches, Too, Get Fat on an Unbalanced Diet | Discoblog | Discover Magazine()

  • Patty

    OMG!!! This is a sign that we are al going to end up like the birds! Really we can eat health we just choose not to if we keep going were going to die of as a species! All thats going to be left is animals that might not be so bad, I mean it will be better the planet and the 1 problem that wrong with earth will be gone forever! So go ahead and eat your self the grave!!! When we all die Earth will be happy but really why cant we stop eating and control our selfs. We are humans shouldn’t we be smarter then animals? So far nature is winning in the game of life……..

  • weener

    Now all we have to do is come up with “junk foods” for mosquitos and cockroaches!

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