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Male birds are colorful for courtship displays, females are dull for camouflage. But, is written in a website somewhere that sometimes, when females birds are sterile, they grow male plumage due to male's feathers being a dormant gene (or something like that, sorry, I'm no professional). Is true? Can it happen? If so, how came? (and I lost the website's link, so I can't post it here, sorry again)

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    $\begingroup$ Please would you add a link to the website that you mentioned? That would be useful. $\endgroup$ – Jonathan Moore May 8 at 9:53
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I don't have a link to a reference, but I was told by an ornithologist last week that in the UK, female blackbirds (usually brown plumage and brown beak) can sometimes change to more resemble males later in their lives (black plumage and orange beak).

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Some of the information contained in this post requires additional references. Please edit to add citations to reliable sources that support the assertions made here. Unsourced material may be disputed or deleted.

  • $\begingroup$ Unfortunately, anecdotal references are not acceptable even if they come from an expert. Unless there is good statistical evidence, we cannot be sure. It would be super good if you can contact the ornithologist and ask them for a reference. $\endgroup$ – WYSIWYG May 8 at 15:35

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