What Scientists Learned by Dropping a Frozen, Dead Bird in Water

For sea birds like the gannet, diving is more of a way of life than an idle pastime.

They feed near the coast, dive-bombing en masse into the water to reach schools of fish swimming below. Gannets can dive from more than a hundred feet in the air, reaching speeds in excess of 60 miles per hour on the way down — a feat that would likely kill a human.

How the birds manage to avoid damaging their long, slender necks when pitching head-first into the water has been a longstanding mystery t

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