We know that Hyenas laugh and wolves hunt in packs, but a new study that took five years says that flamingos form friendships that hold them together for years. The study on four flocks of captive flamingos was done by the University of Exeter and would be published in June's issue of the journal Behavioral Processes and is out online.
The research finds that both male and female flamingos "choose" to spend one-on-one time with a best friend. This friendship was recorded by research by Paul Rose and Darren Croft in 2012 and continues to this day.
Dr Paul Rose said that similar to humans, flamingos form social bonds for many reasons, "the fact they're so long-lasting suggests they are important for survival in the wild," reported Independent The study further found that larger the size of a flock the more such friendly interactions and hanging out followed. The species is long-lived too noted the researchers.
They hold grudges too
When there is friendship, there should also be something like a counterpart. The birds seemed to hold grudges against those flamingos which rubbed in a wrong way. This way the birds purposefully avoid such flamingos for years, reported Psychology Today.
Also, more details say that same-sex friendships were more stable even though there were flamingos that seem to have a married partner of the opposite sex. Such social bonds grew during the spring and summer, which is their breeding season.
Don't separate these birds
These birds don't simply spend time only with its mating partner, but there were lots of other social bonds. There were pairs, trios and quartets that were regularly together, said Rose. The doctor recommended that to zookeepers that they be careful not to separate flamingos that are closely bonded to each other while moving them.
Unfortunately, some flamingos separate out while they are captured or while transferring then to separate zoos. Humans experience separating out now, more than ever, when they are far away from friends due to coronavirus lockdown.