Egg Dumping by the Seaside
Looks like cuckoos and cowbirds hardly have a monopoly on brood parasitism. A study of over 69,000 nests around the west coast of Scotland turned up some pretty unlikely culprits. 13 different seabird species, chief among them Common Eider and (Eurasian) Oystercatcher, stand accused of egg dumping or laying their eggs in other birds’ nests. Actually, the act seems less nefarious than oblivious since most incidents place eggs in the nests of predators!