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Contact: Lee J. Siegel
University of Utah

Indian Fantail Pigeon with Peak Crest

Caption: An Indian fantail -- one of 350 rock pigeon breeds -- displays a type of head crest known as a peak crest. Researchers from the University of Utah and from China, Denmark and Texas identified a single gene that, when mutated, apparently causes head crests to form in numerous pigeon breeds. It was part of a project that decoded the genetic blueprint of the rock pigeon, among Earth’s most common and diverse bird species.

Credit: Michael D. Shapiro, University of Utah.

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Related news release: Mutant gene gives pigeons fancy hairdos

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