Consider the Canadian white-throated sparrow.

The small songbird’s traditional descending whistle featured a three-note ending. But researchers have tracked how a unique two-note-ending version of the male bird’s call has rapidly spread eastwards from western Canada to central Ontario.

Rather than a regional dialect, the new song type has spread far and wide. It’s a different kind of syncopation pattern, a kind of stuttering. For a song to take off like this so widely is unheard of.

It’s unclear why the new doublets are so popular. Researchers think it has to do with the female sparrows, who may enjoy a little novelty.

The songtype is essentially an advertisement. The old songtype, the old campaign wasn’t gaining the necessary attention.

So the little bird had to change its tune.

Make its creative a little more novel.

A little more unique.

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