American Bird Conservancy discovers four new bird species: Blue, teal, pink, and purple Peeps
Around this time in 2011, the humble marshmallow Peep was the American Bird Conservancy’s bird of the week. Now it’s back in the top spot — but this year, the non-yellow Peeps are getting their due, being finally officially recognized as separate species instead of just color variations.
Up until now, scientists have recognized only the familiar “yellow” form of peep as a full species; but there is currently support in the ornithological community for granting separate species status to the blue, teal, pink, and purple forms, currently considered color morphs. “There simply isn’t any evidence that these forms interbreed,” said ABC senior scientist Dr. David Wiedenfeld. “While they can often be found roosting in the same box, the fact is that nobody has ever seen an intermediate bird between the color morphs,” he added.
The big news here, of course, is that American Bird Conservancy scientists apparently spend their time making up bullshit stories about Peeps:
During their breeding season, Peeps can easily be found in suburban backyard habitats, where they lay clutches of colorful eggs in nests of brightly-colored plastic grasses. Adult and immature peeps can be quickly located by their sweet calls and neon plumage.
Go home, ornithologists, you are drunk.
Bird of the Week, March 27, 2013, The Peep, American Bird Conservancy.
Get Grist in your inbox