A new research says that certain native flowers are turning red to entice birds as pollinators, shifting away from insects that did the job earlier.
Mani Shrestha from the Monash School of Biological Sciences, Australia, who led the study, said bird-pollinated flowers may have evolved red signals to be inconspicuous to some insects that were poor pollinators while enticing bird pollinators.
He collected spectral data from more than 200 flowering plants and identified the pollinators as birds or insects. Spectral data precisely describes a colour by specifying the amount of each wavelength that the sample reflects, the journal New Phytologist reports.
Adrian Dyer, associate professor of photography at the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology's School of Media and Communication, who with Burd supervised Shrestha's Ph.D dissertation, said previous studies have shown that flower colour evolved to attract bees as pollinators.