Millennium Post

Birds in unison

Birds in unison
Why do birds follow the V pattern?
Some birds, including swans, geese, cranes, pelicans and flamingos, form tight, V-shaped patterns, while others fly together in loose flocks. V-shaped formations help birds conserve energy, since each bird flies slightly ahead of the other, there is less wind resistance. To keep things fair, birds take turns being in the front, with each bird moving to the back when they get tired. Age, sex and body size also play a role in who leads the V-formation. In a flock of adults and young birds, juveniles usually do not lead since they are less able to maintain high speeds in lead position and would slow the entire flock down. Researchers have determined that pelicans that fly in group formation beat their wings less often and have lower heart rates than those that fly alone. In this way, birds that fly in V-formation conserve much-needed energy during their long, difficult journeys. This V-formation also enhances communication and coordination within the flock, allowing birds to improve orientation and follow their route more directly. In formation, every bird is accounted for.
What is a pearl made of and from where does it originate?
A pearl is a hard object produced within the soft tissue of a living shelled mollusk. A pearl is made up of calcium carbonate in minute crystalline form, which has been deposited in concentric layers. A natural pearl begins its life as a foreign object, such as a parasite or piece of shell that accidentally lodges itself in an oyster's soft inner body where it cannot be expelled. To ease this irritant, the oyster's body takes defensive action. The oyster begins to secrete a smooth, hard crystalline substance around the irritant in order to protect itself. This substance is called “nacre.” As long as the irritant remains within its body, the oyster will continue to secrete nacre around it, layer upon layer. Over time, the irritant will be completely encased by the silky crystalline coatings. And the result is a pearl.

Cultured pearls share the same properties as natural pearls. Oysters form cultured pearls in an almost identical fashion. The only difference is a person  implants the irritant in the oyster.
Are bats blind as said in the idiom Bind as a bat?
A. The saying “blind as a bat”, simply isn’t correct. The truth is that all 1,100 bat species can see and often their vision is pretty good, although not as excellent as many other night-hunting animals. nocturnal bats guide themselves in the dark using a special sonar system. While flying, bats make high-frequency sounds that bounce off objects and return to the bats as echoes. Bats’ brains then process the auditory information into visual maps, which allow them to “see” in the dark. However, in the daytime or when there is otherwise sufficient light available, they are perfectly capable of using their eyes to see as well.
Can cats tolerate cold weather?
A. It is a common belief that cats and dogs are more resistant than people to cold weather because of their fur coats. This assumption is untrue. Cats susceptible to frostbite and hypothermia and should therefore be kept inside during cold weather. A cat’s temperature tolerance can vary from pet to pet, based on their coat, body fat stores, activity level, age, and health. However, despite this, no pet should be left outside for long periods of time in cold weather.

Winter time can be especially dangerous for felines as a warm vehicle engine may seem like an appealing heat source for outdoor and feral cats. This can result in injury or even death. Check underneath cars in the winter to make sure that no cats are hiding and trying to keep warm.
Are cats nearsighted?
Cats are nearsighted, meaning they can see better close up than far away. Interestingly enough, cats are also unable to see directly underneath their nose, which is why if you set a treat down directly underneath them they may have trouble finding it right away. While cat eyesight is excellent for detecting motion and seeing in the dark, it is not as good for seeing detail. A cat’s eyesight has developed to assist them in the hunting process.

One of the most remarkable things about a cat’s eyesight, however, is their ability to see at night. Since cat’s are nocturnal predators, their eyesight makes them efficient hunters. While cats are unable to see in total darkness, they require only one sixth the amount of light than humans do to see. Their pupils can dilate three times larger than the human eye allowing in more light. Cat’s also have reflective cells behind their retina that amplify the light that comes into their eyes

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