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First Documented Cross-Breeding of Aegithalos Species in Beijing

In Beijing, during March, a significant discovery was made: the first documented case of cross-breeding between Aegithalos caudatus, commonly known as the long-tailed bushtit, and Aegithalos glaucogularis, formerly a sub-species but now recognized as an individual species referred to as the silver-throated bushtit. The two birds had completed their nest construction and were observed at the stage of hatching their eggs. This event sheds light on the potential for hybridization between closely related species and highlights the dynamic nature of avian biology. Originally, the two species became characterized as their individual species because they have different appearances, different spheres of activity, and can not cross-breed. Still, this discovery suggests the latter two reasons are invalid.


The nest is situated just one kilometer from my house, and I've been making frequent visits to it, capturing photographs, and conducting qualitative observations.


Aegithalos caudatus:


Aegithalos glaucogularis:


Both birds and their nest:




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