by Andre on 18 August 2006
A study that truly earned its Ig Nobel graced my inbox today. It’s a wonderful demonstration of how basic physical principles can impact biology. Here’s a schematic of their subject:
It also benefits from an abstract that gets right to the point.
Chinstrap and Ade ï¿½?lie penguins generate con-
siderable pressures to propel their faeces away from the
edge of the nest. The pressures involved can be
Like most good research, it raises more questions than it answers and needs more funding. The authors conclude:
Whether the bird deliberately chooses the direction into
which it decides to expel its faeces or whether this de-
pends on the direction from which the wind blows at
the time of evacuation are questions that need to be
addressed on another expedition to Antarctica.
The article [pdf] is available free of charge for your reading pleasure.
Asside: The lead author’s research is prolific and incredibly eclectic. Just check out this publication list!