Arrg The Falconer
He'd love one of these.
The Falcon for Emperors :-D
Flabbers around the world were gasted this week, as news emerged of a previously unknown flying dinosaur equipped with feathered legs – giving it the ability to make precision landings or attacks on its prey. Feathery death from above The 125-million-year-old dinosaur is of the Microraptor group and is named Changyuraptor …
> without bothering with a wind tunnel
I have access to Nature, so I checked for you. You were right, they did not use a wind tunnel, so I just did in their stead*. Turns out that the fossil doesn't land very stylishly. It also seems to be quite clumsy in mid-air manoeuvres. So you're right, this article is rubbish.
*Using a piece of basalt to model the fossil, as it comes from the Yixian Formation.
could you perhaps compare how this attacker would stand up against the F35-whatevers that the Queen Liz is currently not equipped with, and which appear to be catching on fire for as yet undetermined reasons? Both their actual intended role, and related stuff like cost, maintenance, etcetera?
Short answer: life is a competition in which the weapons continually have to evolve to meet changing circumstances.
Longer answer; over time the environment of the surface of the Earth has changed dramatically, with Ice Ages and warm periods, and continental drift. This has resulted in extinctions and the evolution of new species. The human race (sapiens sapiens) very nearly went extinct in the Mesolithic (we may all be the descendants of just a few hundred South Africans, with a small intermix of Neanderthal and Denisovans for some population groups) so perhaps one tsunami or big volcano eruption at the right moment and it might be a Neanderthal writing this, or there might be no humans at all. Population now tells us nothing about the fitness of a species at some time in the past.
"Wedgetail eagle" you say? Never heard of it, let's look for some pics...
Aye, I see what you mean. Feathered legs and rather long tail feathers, alright.
WTF! Look at the size of that, did that eagle just kill a... a... Wait, what is that? A kangaroo?!
Ah, so it's Australian. Suddenly it all makes sense.
A wedgie eating roadkill can ruin your whole day. You come over a crest at 100km/h, the wedgie takes off but it's big so it doesn't rise fast enough, and the next thing you know the massive eagle has smashed through your windscreen and into your face.
I bet the eagle's day wouldn't fare any better...
car, shmar. chickenfeed. try hitting one with a plane, or worse, having one have a go at your plane. The loud bang was heard 3000 feet below and two miles away. Plane made it back OK but entire tailplane checked and horizontal stabiliser needed a rebuild. The characters who fly fabric planes have a well founded fear of Oz bird life. Fortunately the local ones around my airfield mostly ignore us when we use them as thermal markers. One nearly rammed me on an inland flight but literally grabbed air with wings and legs extended to brake before it stopped short of my starboard wing tip. I think we both were distracted by the flock of ibis thermalling ahead for different reasons. The one time I left helmet cam behind, mumble mutter. This supports idea that feathered legs have aerodynamic use, but I suspect mostly as airbrakes to allow speed control in swoop attacks.
As for car damage and off-topic, emus, the Oz version of flightless birds are regarded as much worse to hit than a big roo in the Oz NW and WA. Those skinny legs break and 50kg of annoyed bird arrives thru windscreen.
"At least use the correct name - it is from the Counterweight continent. Now that really makes sense (provided that you do not ask the library for a list of all the dangerous animals in there)."
Fourecks, methinks. Some of the sheep are safe, however.
Still: no worries!
@Michael. Wedgies were shot for years for taking lambs. Seems they were cleaning up carrion mostly. Wedgie pair over the hill from home never bothered my sheep and lambs anyway. Now if only the wedgetails would develop a hunger for foxes that a clot of a pom introduced here...
BTW, isn't Antarctica a better counter weight than Oz ? Oz is so lightweight in most things, except stupid governments. Where the heck do we find so many idiots ?
Genetics ? hmm, let consider. Since less than 25% in the 1960s had a convict ancestor and its way lower now that suggests you are right for the wrong reason. Pommie aristocrats and successful con merchants came here and bred, becoming another ruling class. Mkes sense of the senseless.