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A view of the sky appeared to me last week. No saint appeared in a cloud or wrote revelations on eggplant seeds. Instead, a dove left a body print on the doors of our yard.
The wings have been shown solely to give a sense of proportion. The side of the head, which has a light stain on the eye, is rendered on a gray scale. You can also see the ghost of a tail.
This evidence of bird failure highlighted how rare flying accidents are, even in complex man-made environments. I realized that my piles of bird books have almost nothing to say about the way birds fly so well. That is, apologizing to ostriches and penguins is their defining trait. It inspires human beings that we too can do things that seem incredibly difficult.
It looks like the pigeon was braking in a split second as the reflected sky turned glass into glass. At one point the William Tell overture was metaphorically knocking. Next, a cabin alarm sounded and a recorded voice shouted “Pull!” She was screaming.
The victim of the accident had to bounce off the glass and fly. Luckily, the pigeons around me are well stuffed. They walk around our meadow wearing expressions of displeasure. They remind me of a particular race of city councilors I met as a Beat journalist.
Hein Van Grouw questions this characterization, in the name of the pigeons, not in the elect. He is a fan of pigeons and the chief curator of birds at the Natural History Museum in London. He said the pigeons are pretty light. They can count to nine, and I suspect some members of the current UK cabinet are finding it a challenge.
An arms race with hawk predators means that pigeons are excellent fliers. But their adaptations can make humans appear dumb. Pigeon heads are small compared to the huge chest muscles and they become awkward while walking, due to the need to stand still in flight.
Without this ability, the birds could not see where they were going so well. A great view is just as important as the ability to fly and feathers. “Most of the bird’s brain is sight,” says Richard Bomphrey of Royal Veterinary College.
Judging distances is key. See the feat a starling makes in landing in the garden bird feed. Are you able to drive your car to a parking lot at 20 mph and then stop dead, perfectly aligned with the white lines? Neither do I.
The ability of some birds to fly in high winds is also unique. It’s been a storm lately. The little birds took refuge. But crows and seagulls were making kits at 40 km / h.
It should feel like drift diving, where you put on your diving gear, jump into the stream and go with the flow. It was a big blast when I tried it. But I got a mile from where I expected the diving boat to pick me up and I’m not sure I would do it again.
Emily Shepard of the University of Swansea says that flying expert screens can be a way to show physical condition to rivals and potential partners. It also suggests that the crows and seagulls that roamed the storm are having a good time. under voice.
I recently embarked on a course planner, FT colleague Jane Owen’s evidence of the midway crisis. He also refuted Warner Brothers ’saying“ you believe humans can fly, ”at least in a way that might apply to me. “Okay, I’m going back to that air that will lift us up again, right?” every time I took the controls it was the teacher’s stirrup.
After a few drinks one night, another internship pilot admitted that it was the only book he had read Jonathan Livingston Seagull. It is about the 1970s, about a persecuted seabird who wants to fly brilliantly. This is not well aged. But the book encouraged my acquaintance, who is very dyslexic, to go to school and get into professional jobs at a time when few allowances were given for these disabilities.
A flying bird is repeated as a metaphor for the freedom of the spirit from the writings of the Honorable Blessing to the film. Blade Runner. It’s impossible to release one into the air without feeling excited.
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But the reality is that flying imposes tremendous physiological punishments. The weight limit for skilled birds is marked by a 33-pound Andean condor. An injury that a mammal has been able to prevent is a death penalty for a bird. “They own heaven, but they are also slaves,” Shepard says.
As for the pigeons cannoning in my windows, the solution lies beneath my nose. FT moved its London operation to its smart and refurbished London offices in 2019. For a week or so, loud noises were heard as reporters pulled out the glass doors of the inner plate as they approached the newsstand table. Caregivers applied discreet stickers, highlighting the risk.
If the business works for journalists, it should also work for pigeons.
Jonathan Guthrie is the head of Lex
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