Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Lessons from the geese?

The geese who inhabit the wildlife preserve where we walk each day are back; not many, but a few as the ice begins to melt. I wonder if you see them yet, returning for spring flying along in "V" formation? Do you know what science has discovered as to why they fly that way?

FACT 1 - As each Goose flaps its wings it creates uplift for the birds that follow. By flying in a V formation, the whole flock adds 71 per cent greater flying range than if each bird flew alone.

FACT 2 - When a Goose falls out of formation, it suddenly feels the drag and resistance of flying alone. It quickly moves back into formation to take advantage of the lifting power of the bird immediately in front of it.

FACT 3 - When the lead Goose tires, it rotates back into the formation and another Goose flies to the point position.

FACT 4 - The Geese flying in formation honk to encourage those up front to keep up their speed.

FACT 5 - When a Goose gets sick, wounded or shot down, two Geese drop out of formation and follow it down to help and protect it. They stay with it until it dies or is able to fly again. Then, they launch out with another formation or catch up with the flock.

Are there lessons we can learn from a gaggle of geese? What do you think?


  1. Hey guys, I am from Mr. Max's class from swan river .. I was just looking at your guys site and read this article, personally I think that these animals are some of the smartest ones around .. we could definatly learn from their patterns. On another note, I find it very interesting that I can interact with your class .. I am really interested in the controversy of a project shared between the two classes. I dont have much else to say .. good luck in the rest of the year!

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