Zee Media Bureau
New Delhi: Have you ever given a thought to the fact that how do baby birds learn to fly early? This is surely going to amaze all of us that despite have extremely underdeveloped wings and muscles, baby birds rely more on their wings and legs for power.
This helps them to acquire a mature flight stroke early in life as they possess small "protowings" or "mini wings" that surely can't help them fly early on.
On the contrary, adult birds have large wings and robust interlocking forelimb skeletons that may help meet the demands of flight.
Despite these limitations, young birds can flap their wings as they run up slopes and even briefly fly, challenging longstanding ideas about the origin of flight and flight development, the researchers said.
Inspite of their undeveloped anatomy, young birds appeared to produce all of the elements of the avian flight stroke and modify their wing stroke for different behaviours, much like adults.
The force generated by flapping may push the birds forward as well as upward, improving traction as they climb.
"Baby birds anatomically look a lot like some of the dinosaur fossils that we see," said Ashley Heers from American Museum of Natural History in US.
"And so, by studying baby birds and looking at how they actually use these dinosaur-like anatomies, we can get a better sense of how these long-extinct animals might have been using their wings," Heers concluded.
(With IANS inputs)