How birds never crash into each other mid-air?

Discussion in 'Biology & Genetics' started by Plazma Inferno!, Sep 30, 2016.

  1. Plazma Inferno! Ding Ding Ding Ding Administrator

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    Research at The University of Queensland has revealed the stunningly simple reason why birds never crash mid-flight: they always veer right.
    The findings from Professor Mandyam Srinivasan’s laboratory at QBI have enormous potential for automated anti-crash systems on aircraft.
    In a series of experiments, team of researchers released pairs of budgerigars from the opposite ends of a tunnel, and filmed them with high-speed video cameras to observe their strategies. The team recorded 10 birds on 102 flights – and not a single collision was observed.



    Another finding was that birds would rarely fly at the same height, and this raises the question of whether individual birds have a specific preference for flying higher or lower.
    This research is being conducted in collaboration with Boeing Defence Australia and the Queensland University of Technology.

    http://www.qbi.uq.edu.au/news/budgies-provide-crash-course-flight-safety
     
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  3. Counter Registered Senior Member

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    They veer right? Strange.
     
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  5. exchemist Valued Senior Member

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    So they just obey the "port-to-port" rule, as ships do. I wonder who had the idea first.

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  7. billvon Valued Senior Member

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    Sometimes they do. It's just rare because they are very good fliers.
     
  8. geordief Registered Senior Member

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    I had a bat in the kitchen the other night .(smallish so maybe not adult ).I wasn't phased as I thought it would make its own way out but it kept circling the room (never a chance of it hitting me but it was some acrobatics). After 20 minutes or so I lost patience and tried to shepherd it towards the window .

    No use . Then I got more annoyed and it swooped down and squeezed in behind a cupboard (it hid from me).

    So I left it ,opened the window more ,went to bed and never saw it again

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  9. billvon Valued Senior Member

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    Apparently they can't see hair - which is why women sometimes get bats tangled in their hair. They see a bat, duck, their hair flies up in the air, and the bat flies right into it.
     
  10. geordief Registered Senior Member

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    What Ducks in their hair ? I don't think so. Actually I heard that that hair thing was a myth . Now you tell me it is true.

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    Maybe it was the wrong thread?

    http://www.sciforums.com/threads/are-you-a-quack.157899/
     
  11. geordief Registered Senior Member

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    Captain Birdseye

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    (ducks)
     
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  12. sideshowbob Sorry, wrong number. Valued Senior Member

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    I was standing on a footbridge once and a sparrow came flying straight at the railing. At the last second she (yes, I could tell) did a loop and landed on the railing right beside me.
     
  13. billvon Valued Senior Member

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    Happened to us once in a cave in Anza Borrego. It was hard to tell who was more terrified - Molly or the bat.
     
  14. iceaura Valued Senior Member

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    They can "see" hair just fine if they are flying on sonar. They sometimes hit new and unfamiliar things, hard to see stuff where no stuff should be, in their home caves, because they don't use sonar in them - it would be a cacophony.
     
  15. sweetpea Registered Senior Member

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    No, the ''port-to-port'' rule is for fish.
     
  16. geordief Registered Senior Member

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    reported
     
  17. Jan Ardena Valued Senior Member

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    I always had the the idea that their perception of time was considerably slower than how we percieve their speed, enabeling them to quite easily avoid collision. Just as we easily avoid collision in a busy street.

    jan.
     
  18. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

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    Since their primary food source is mosquitoes, I'd be surprised if they couldn't see hair.

    I was always under the impression that they're not getting caught at all, they're picking off mosquitoes from the hair.
     
  19. iceaura Valued Senior Member

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    Bats in my area don't eat many gnats or mosquitos - moths, beetles, caddis flies, bigger stuff generally. Check out the teeth.

    They hit things when off sonar, like people (not just hair, they'll fly into your face if you don't duck, but the flinch reflex to fly up at last second obstacle sighting puts them at hair height) , especially when near their home roost where they think they know the place and are overflying their eyesight. They also get caught in things like mist nets or other traps specially designed and hung to fool sonar, but these have to be pretty big, and the bats will learn to avoid them (they can detect them once they know what to listen for, even the ones with netting as fine as hair) https://www.rgs.org/NR/rdonlyres/2C503639-2BCE-4580-AA66-8725DA4D412A/0/BatManualUpdated.pdf.

    It's different with bats because they are flying more slowly and scanning differently - at least, the insect eaters are. If would be interesting to see if they have some kind of automatic go-right reflex. And if all species of birds go right. Ostriches?
     
  20. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

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    I wonder if it's tied to handedness (wingedness?), and if somewhere around 10-13% of them go left.
     
  21. river Valued Senior Member

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    Actually they always fly to the right of each other .

    Saw this on Discovery Channel the other day .
     
  22. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

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    You mean when approaching head-on?
     
  23. river Valued Senior Member

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    Flock flying together changing positions in flight , with thousands in tune with the thousands at the sametime .
     
    Last edited: Oct 25, 2016

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