Nature Is Wonderful! Researchers Have Decided That Birds Can Nonetheless Fly If You Zip A Bunch Of Them Up Inside A Duffel Bag
The more we learn about nature, the more incredible it becomes, and we are really impressed by a groundbreaking new discovery about bird flight: Researchers have found that birds can still fly if you pull a few up in a travel bag.
According to the bomb study published in the journal yesterday scienceBirds in a medium to large duffel bag generally retain enough flight capacity to propel the duffel bag up to three feet above the ground, and can also slowly fly the bag around a small area for hours at a time. The study describes how the researchers originally expected their tests to show that putting it in a duffel bag completely interfered with the birds’ ability to fly. However, they were stunned to find that eight seagulls crammed together in a closed duffel bag were able to lift the bag to waist level and hover over the laboratory before sitting in an empty chair. And while the seagulls in the duffel bag showed a significant reduction in speed and maneuverability, mostly only sliding around aimlessly and bumping into obstacles, they were still able to take off reliably almost every time the scientists whistled loudly at them to flap their wings to frighten them.
“Of course, you can’t do studies on this scale without losing some birds to asphyxiation or a frenzy of bird evisceration caused by panic, but thanks to generous funding from the aerospace sector, we have never been short of specimens to help us out Conducting this important research, “said Dr. Elizabeth Ballentine at Yale, the lead researcher behind this incredible discovery. “This patronage enabled us to indulge any curiosity: what happens if we throw the travel bag around with hockey sticks during the flight? Could a predator like a fox or a snake with the birds motivate them to fly higher? Do the birds still fuck when they are packed tightly in a pitch-black enclosure with 86 of their bird friends? Of course, it will take more time and more birds to fully answer these questions, but we are very encouraged with the results we are already seeing and we believe we are just scratching the surface of all the valuable insights we can learn from this extraordinary phenomenon. “
While the team initially focused on seagulls, an unexpected $ 92 million grant from the NIH allowed them to expand the scope of their work to other bird species, most of which also demonstrated the ability to fly, albeit with, in a duffel bag some fascinating variations in behavior. Owls, for example, were able to float the duffel bag around completely silently without making the frightened screeching noises made by most other bird species. Geese managed to arrange themselves in their characteristic V-formation when they were divided into several duffel bags in the same room. And although normally flightless penguins still couldn’t fly with a zipper in a duffel bag, they were impressively able to toss the bag gently around the ocean floor when thrown into the water, which species like hummingbirds and cardinals couldn’t.
There is still so much to learn about the world around us and the wonderful creatures that inhabit it. This is hands down one of the coolest animal behaviors we have ever seen. We can’t help but feel pretty lucky that we can share our planet with creatures as incredible as birds!