Pigeons and Tomatoes

31 May 2013

At http://phys.org/print289048035.html ... pigeons pecking the ground in search of seeds or crumbs may appear to be acting randomly as a scavenger but the birds have the ability, it would seem, of making intelligent choices. The experiment explains that peculiar pecking motion and why when they eat all the bird food in the garden and you purposely avoid putting anymore out there for several days in order to deter them, preferring to feed the tits and warblers, sparrows and robins, they still come round every day to check the place out, pecking aimlessly at the ground where no seeds have been scattered.

Meanwhile, at http://phys.org/print289030944.html ... we learn that ozone can protect fruit from decay for weeks after exposure which in this particular experiment, focussed on tomatoes. The study is published in Postharvest Biology and Technology which explored the impact of zone on proteins in tomatoes. Low levels of ozone can protect fruite and vegetables from disease - and increase shelf life. It is actually used as an anti-spoilage agent and has been for many years. Scientists don't know why it works. On the other hand ozone appears to inhibit the ability of tomato plants to grow rapidly - which is important in the kind of fragmented summers we get in the UK.