Baby pterodactyls could fly from birth

A breakthrough discovery reveals that pterodactyls, extinct flying reptiles, had a remarkable ability—they could fly from birth. The importance of this discovery is highlighted by the fact that no other living vertebrates ...

New research explores the mechanics of how birds flock

Wildlife researchers have long tried to understand why birds fly in flocks and how different types of flocks work. A new study from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill explores the mechanics and benefits of the ...

Ancient birds out of the egg running

The ~125 million-year-old Early Cretaceous fossil beds of Los Hoyas, Spain, have long been known for producing thousands of petrified fish and reptiles (Fig. 1). However, researchers have uncovered an extremely rare, nearly ...

Songbirds set long-distance migration record

Researchers at Lund University in Sweden have studied flight routes to determine how far willow warblers migrate in the autumn. The results show that the willow warbler holds a long-distance migration record in the ten-gram ...

Video: feathers not included

Inspired by the beauty and flying ability of birds, Leonardo da Vinci strived centuries ago to create a human-powered flapping-wing flying machine. But his designs, which da Vinci explored in his Codex on the Flight of Birds, ...

Leonardo da Vinci's take on dynamic soaring

Although Leonardo da Vinci (1452-1519) is known to have studied bird flight, few people realise that he was the first to document flight maneuvers, now called dynamic soaring. Birds use these maneuvers to extract energy from ...

Chinese Cretaceous fossil highlights avian evolution

A newly identified extinct bird species from a 127 million-year-old fossil deposit in northeastern China provides new information about avian development during the early evolution of flight.

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