Saturday, October 3, 2009

A Frightful demonstration

I've always been intrigued by birds. They're fun to watch, and despite the commonly used derogatory expression "bird brain," they're really very intelligent creatures.

Although I knew they were capable of some pretty amazing feats, I had no idea that at least one type of bird can legitimately challenge the cheetah for the title of fastest animal on the planet — at least not until I watched this video of a peregrine falcon named Frightful, who was clocked executing dives at speeds between 183 mph and 242 mph.

One could probably question some of the methods used in the following experiment, and the claims made as a result of it, but it nevertheless leaves no doubt that the peregrine falcon is one fast and focused bird.

I think my favorite part of this video, though, is when her handlers take Frightful up in a plane, and she has this sort of panicked look, almost as though she was thinking, "What the ...? You call this flying?"

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