Birds network too | Science News

Real Science. Real News.

Science News is a nonprofit.

Support us by subscribing now.


Birds network too

11:28am, February 18, 2008

On winter evenings in some southern European towns, tens of thousands of starlings congregate over their roosts. Above the ruins of Rome's ancient Baths of Diocletian, huge black clouds of starlings assemble and continually morph into new shapes, possibly to signal their position to buddies who are still navigating their way home.

Scientists have proposed several explanations for how bird flocks, fish schools, and other large groups of animals coordinate their acrobatics, especially when they have to quickly change course to avoid predators, says Andrea Cavagna, a physicist at Italy's National Research Council (CNR) in Rome. The assumption has been that individuals match their trajectories to those of all animals within

This article is only available to Science News subscribers. Already a subscriber? Log in now.
Or subscribe today for full access.

Get Science News headlines by e-mail.

More from Science News

From the Nature Index Paid Content