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MigBuster

Why do birds...........

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Seems to me that if a bird couldn't feel the dynamic changes of the air pressure with its wings (feathers), it wouldn't be able to fly very well! Can I have a study grant now.:)

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Wonder how much they spent on this, I didn't even realise it was considered a mystery... hell I read that exact explanation almost verbatum before I left school  :blink:

 

Craig

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If they don't, they crap in each others faces, and no one wants to be tail end charlie.

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Just because some guy at BBC writes that way, doesn't mean the entire scientific work was about "why" birds flew in V-formation - it might have been a side-product of the work or a proof by new methods.

The wingbeat-timing was new to me (though it sounds intuitive).

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I remember readingin a women´s magazine an anthropologic study about why men hug each other keeping their lower parts of their body apart, calling it an A type hug. They found out that it was to keep distance with each other genitals. I wonder why didn´t they bother asking any random dude. They must be really awkward to men if it is such a groundbreaking discovery. Any guy would have referenced lightsabers or something.

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Because asking "any random" dude isn't of any statistical relevance and thus does not provide a valid scientific background.

The experiment has to be reproducable and falsifiable.

 

Asking "any random dude" on the street does not factor in the tested persons' educational, sociologocal, ethnical or religious background. Only if those factors can be normlaized, one can speak of a standard behaviour in human males. Another side-track of the experiment could be studying the behaviour of close cousins in the animal-kingdom, such as chimpanzees.

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Yes, and such method is even more necessary for the birds, however, it seems to be a bit of an overkill as an investigation

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Half-explained. Wingtip vortices create the pressure that increases the lift. The Mythbusters quantified the gain based on fuel savings and, IIRC, even measured out how far from the preceding wingtip it's effective a couple of years ago. I don't remember, but I think they only used two aircraft, so I don't know whether or not the effect is cumulative.


Actually, my first instinct was to respond...

 

"...suddenly appear
every time

you are near?"

 

:biggrin:

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You also have to factor in 'Pecking Order' of the flock for formation position,

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Negative, Raven (unless you're going for the pun). The lead rotates so all take turns breaking the wind (no pun intended there) and deriving the benefit of trail.

Which raises another question I don't believe has been answered before. Does the leader simply shift back one position and one of those in the rear comes forward or does the lead drop to the back and slowly rotate to the front again?

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That would enable longer flock fligh duration'as for rotation I've have to just guess.

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