Dr Alan E Burger of University of Victoria, Canada, has been working for Nature Seychelles, and investigated why the Pisonia tree kills birds.
Pisonia tree fruiting © Alan Burger
The Mapou tree of Seychelles, known to science as Pisonia grandis, is widespread across the tropical Indo-Pacific. It is found most often on small islands that have seabird colonies, where it is often the dominant forest tree and provides favoured nesting sites for terns and noddies. Its seeds, produced in clusters of 50-200, exude a resin that makes them stick readily to feathers.