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A Bird in the Hand

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As children, most of us were taught that we should never handle baby birds. The mother would detect human scent on the nestling and abandon or kill the clutch.

Not true! In fact, most birds can't even smell a human, and there are times when handling a nestling is absolutely the right thing to do.

Snopes has the lowdown.



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People often forget that most bird species can hardly smell at ALL.

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You are right, it is a myth. In fact, when I was a child, I handled baby birds on a regular basis and it was never a problem. If anyone wants a more comprehensive overview of this, they can look at the website of Scientific America, linked below: or fiction birds abandon young page

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