How Would A Tiny Hummingbird Fare In A Wind Tunnel?

Hummingbirds are amazing fliers. They are the only birds that can fly backward and hover for long stretches of time. How does this work? Scientists aim to find out.

Researchers took wild hummingbirds and put them in a wind tunnel to see how they were able to fly when the wind blows and the rain falls. It turns out that hummingbirds can twist their bodies like cats, rotating in the direction of the air flows. Using this ability, they are able to navigate on a windy day to reach the flowers they feed from.

Hummingbirds are, as the video description states “the only birds that can fly sideways, backward and hover for long stretches of time. In fact, hovering is essential to hummingbirds’ survival since they have to keep their long, thin beaks as steady as a surgeon’s scalpel while probing flowers for nectar.”