Tuesday, July 28, 2009


This high-speed flash photo of a male broadbill hummingbird was taken without the electric eye that R.W. Scott usually uses, because the hummingbird "will be there and gone before triggering." Hummingbirds flap their wings as many as 100 times per second, which made it a challenge for scientists to figure out how they hover and to replicate this feat mechanically. Biologists have also determined that pound for pound - or should I say ounce for ounce - the hummingbird is the world's fastest flyer, diving up to speeds of 385 body-lengths per second. But the science takes some of the magic out of it, so have a look at this video of the splendid courtship ritual of the Marvellous Spatuletail. And here are a couple of "Marlin Perkins" moments for you:
I have now blogged about both of Melissa's favorite animals - hummingbirds and seahorses (in particular, leafy sea dragons)!

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