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Vampire finches: how little birds in the Galápagos got a taste for big bird blood

By Kiyoko Gotanda, Postdoctoral Research Fellow, University of Cambridge
Daniel Baldassarre, Assistant Professor of Zoology, State University of New York Oswego
Jaime Chaves, Assistant Professor, Ecology and Evolution, San Francisco State University
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For most people, the word “vampire” brings to mind Dracula or perhaps slayers such as Blade or Buffy; or maybe even the vampire bats of South America. Few will think of a small and rather lovely bird – the finch.

But there are indeed “vampire finches” that feast on the blood of much larger birds, and they were introduced to the world in a fantastic segment of Perfect Planet, the new series narrated by David…

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