Drop-catch behaviour is play in herring gulls, <ce:italic>Larus argentatus</ce:italic>

@article{Gamble2002DropcatchBI,
  title={Drop-catch behaviour is play in herring gulls, <ce:italic>Larus argentatus</ce:italic>},
  author={Jennifer R. Gamble and Daniel Aaron Cristol},
  journal={Animal Behaviour},
  year={2002},
  volume={63},
  pages={339-345}
}
Behaviours with no apparent adaptive function are sometimes described as play without rigorous testing of alternative explanations. One such behaviour is the repeated dropping and catching of objects by birds. We observed drop-catch behaviour by herring gulls over 3 years at a site where the birds frequently dropped clams to break them on hard surfaces below. We tested unique suites of predictions from three hypotheses, that the drop-catch behaviour is play, that it functions to expose… CONTINUE READING