What do birds do when the weather goes IFR?

Discussion in 'Hangar Talk' started by BiffJ, Jun 14, 2017.

  1. BiffJ

    BiffJ Pre-takeoff checklist

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2010
    Messages:
    408
    Location:
    indiana USA

    Display name:
    BiffJ
    I know I've seen them flying in clouds. Do they have some sort of an air traffic control system in place?

    54 Robin cleared to descend to 12 feet, converging sparrow traffic at your 4 o'clock not a factor.
    17 blackbird cleared to land 3rd spruce on the right, advise when you have branches in sight fog layer lifting to 7 feet at this time

    Just wondering


    Frank
     
    CC268 likes this.
  2. MassPilot

    MassPilot Cleared for Takeoff

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2012
    Messages:
    1,093
    Location:
    Melbourne, FL

    Display name:
    FloridaPilot
    How do they even stay right-side-up? Do they have built in attitude gyros?
     
  3. Art VanDelay

    Art VanDelay Pattern Altitude

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2011
    Messages:
    2,409
    Location:
    Del Boca Vista

    Display name:
    Art VanDelay
    They stay where they're at and poop on your car while waiting for weather to clear.
     
  4. wanttaja

    wanttaja En-Route

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2008
    Messages:
    3,596
    Location:
    Seattle

    Display name:
    Ron Wanttaja
    I live at the edge of a steep ~400-foot hill overlooking a wide valley. The local crows nest in the forest behind my house, and "commute" into the valley to hunt for food (commercial area with fast-food restaurants, etc.). They fly overhead, then down to the valley in the morning, and reverse the trip in the evening.

    I couple of years back, I'd gotten up for work and was sitting in my second-floor office checking email. The day was seriously foggy, probably no more than 50-100 foot visibility. I noticed a lot of scraping and rattling on the gutters above my office window.

    Looking out the window, I saw crows (apparently lining my gutters) launch in singles and in groups to try to fly down the hill. They'd glide down a bit, start fading into the fog, then whirl around to fly back to my gutter. They were refusing to continue VFR into IMC conditions....

    Ron Wanttaja
     
    FlyingElvii and denverpilot like this.
  5. wanttaja

    wanttaja En-Route

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2008
    Messages:
    3,596
    Location:
    Seattle

    Display name:
    Ron Wanttaja
    Do you know what happens when ducks fly upside down?

    They quack up.

    Ron Wanttaja
     
  6. RyanB

    RyanB Administrator Management Council Member PoA Supporter

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2010
    Messages:
    13,661
    Location:
    Chattanooga, TN

    Display name:
    Ryan
    They stay covered up in that little nest under the cowling of your airplane until the weather turns VFR. Duh
     
  7. kayoh190

    kayoh190 Administrator Management Council Member

    Joined:
    May 29, 2014
    Messages:
    3,790

    Display name:
    Kayoh@190
    They have to fowl a flight plan.
     
    Skyrys62 and StevieTimes like this.
  8. tinerj

    tinerj Cleared for Takeoff

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2012
    Messages:
    1,348

    Display name:
    tinerj
    I walked into a punch bowl valley with a trail around a small pond. A great blue heron saw me. And, surprisingly, flew toward me, landed, turned around and then flew out, barely clearing the trees at the other end.

    It was obvious that he'd checked the distance and needed a longer flight path.
     
  9. RyanB

    RyanB Administrator Management Council Member PoA Supporter

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2010
    Messages:
    13,661
    Location:
    Chattanooga, TN

    Display name:
    Ryan
    Maybe he was trying to takeoff at max gross? Might've just ate his dinner.
     
  10. GlennAB1

    GlennAB1 Ejection Handle Pulled

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2015
    Messages:
    4,889
    Location:
    Home will always be Vandalia, OH

    Display name:
    GlennAB1
    They ground themselves.
     
    Steven Untet likes this.
  11. Norman

    Norman En-Route Gone West

    Joined:
    May 3, 2013
    Messages:
    4,861
    Location:
    cone of confusion

    Display name:
    KPTK
    I'm no scientist by any stretch but what I have read, if true, they not only have a built-in gyro but also have a built in magnetic compass and great situational awareness. I have seen geese fly in conditions even the most proficient IFR pilot would avoid. They also alert other traffic by frequently honking their horns. Description is oversimplified to be sure but is the best I can offer.
     
  12. KSCessnaDriver

    KSCessnaDriver Pattern Altitude

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2008
    Messages:
    2,192
    Location:
    C62

    Display name:
    KSCessnaDriver
    Worst bird strike I've ever had was at 6000 ft in hard IMC in a 1900. Hit just outside the prop, put a hole the size of a football in the leading edge, where it hit directly on a rib cap.
     
  13. GeorgeC

    GeorgeC Administrator Management Council Member PoA Supporter

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2010
    Messages:
    3,807

    Display name:
    GeorgeC
    Well, at least they squawk.
     
    Skyrys62, azure, WannFly and 2 others like this.
  14. X3 Skier

    X3 Skier En-Route

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2011
    Messages:
    3,830
    Location:
    I19 & SBS

    Display name:
    Geezer
    From what I've read while staying in a Holiday Inn Express, they have a more stable gyro like/unlike our inner ears and a magnetic sensing organ for navigation. No clue how they make the final approach to Landing in IMC so I assume they fly until VFR.

    Cheers
     
  15. Stingray Don

    Stingray Don En-Route

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2014
    Messages:
    2,945
    Location:
    Indianapolis, Indiana

    Display name:
    Stingray Don
    They use ATC (avian traffic control) :D
     
  16. Sac Arrow

    Sac Arrow Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    May 11, 2010
    Messages:
    18,076
    Location:
    Oakland, CA

    Display name:
    Bro do you even lift
    You people are so gull-able.
     
    455 Bravo Uniform likes this.
  17. Everskyward

    Everskyward Experimenter

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2005
    Messages:
    33,267

    Display name:
    Everskyward
    They roost on the runway...
     
  18. cgrab

    cgrab Pattern Altitude

    Joined:
    May 2, 2014
    Messages:
    2,156
    Location:
    Huntsville AL

    Display name:
    cgrab
    SkyDog58 likes this.
  19. Zeldman

    Zeldman Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2014
    Messages:
    14,042
    Location:
    high desert NM

    Display name:
    Billy
    They go to birdie bars and laugh at humans and their noisy flying machines.....
     
  20. BigBadLou

    BigBadLou Final Approach

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2014
    Messages:
    5,171
    Location:
    TX - the friendliest state

    Display name:
    Lou
    They smartly stay on the ground, wishing they were flying.
    (which we cannot say about many VFR-into-IMC pilots)
     
    Steven Untet likes this.
  21. BiffJ

    BiffJ Pre-takeoff checklist

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2010
    Messages:
    408
    Location:
    indiana USA

    Display name:
    BiffJ
    Of course the original post was intended tongue in cheek and seemed to be taken that way....it was prompted by watching a couple birds pop out of the cloud layer this morning though. Clouds were nearly on the deck and we could hear thunder. I was definitely not flying.....

    Frank
     
  22. Stingray Don

    Stingray Don En-Route

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2014
    Messages:
    2,945
    Location:
    Indianapolis, Indiana

    Display name:
    Stingray Don
    They get ridiculed over at BOA --- Birds Of America
     
    Skyrys62 likes this.
  23. arkvet

    arkvet Line Up and Wait

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2016
    Messages:
    776
    Location:
    Arkansas

    Display name:
    Brent
    Around my area it's not uncommon to see the perimeter of large towers littered with snow geese during the fall and winter after lengthy periods of fog. So they may be able to keep attitude in check but their TAWS is certainly inop.
     
  24. AKBill

    AKBill En-Route

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2014
    Messages:
    3,366
    Location:
    Juneau, AK

    Display name:
    AKBill
    Not sure what they do when the encounter IFR conditions. I know at least 2 or 3 times of the year they fly into the windows at our house. Controlled flight into terrain under VFR conditions..
     
    Steven Untet likes this.
  25. Clark1961

    Clark1961 Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2008
    Messages:
    17,746

    Display name:
    Display name:
    If birds fly in IMC, what about icing? I've iced up working outside on the ground in freezing fog and freezing rain conditions. Can birds have TKS installed? I'm sure they don't have boots...
     
  26. PPC1052

    PPC1052 Final Approach

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2012
    Messages:
    5,011

    Display name:
    PPC
    Given their relatively slow stall speeds, it seems that they don't need quite as much visibility to make a safe landing. They just need to be able to keep right side up and navigate.
     
  27. JOhnH

    JOhnH Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    May 20, 2009
    Messages:
    12,926
    Location:
    Florida

    Display name:
    Right Seater
    Do you know how when you see geese flying in a V formation, one leg of the V always seems to be longer than the other? Do you know why that is?



    Because there are more geese on that leg.
     
    Skyrys62, arkvet and Norman like this.
  28. Stingray Don

    Stingray Don En-Route

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2014
    Messages:
    2,945
    Location:
    Indianapolis, Indiana

    Display name:
    Stingray Don
    Because geese can't count. :p
     
    ircphoenix likes this.
  29. SkyDog58

    SkyDog58 Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2015
    Messages:
    13,572
    Location:
    My own special place.

    Display name:
    Canis Non Grata
    Because there are more birds on one side than the other.
     
  30. arkvet

    arkvet Line Up and Wait

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2016
    Messages:
    776
    Location:
    Arkansas

    Display name:
    Brent
    It's equivalent to the needle deflection of the CDI. Once on the correct course the additional goose/ geese will adjust to even things out.
     
    Zeldman likes this.
  31. X3 Skier

    X3 Skier En-Route

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2011
    Messages:
    3,830
    Location:
    I19 & SBS

    Display name:
    Geezer
    Because some are left wing and some are right wing.

    Cheers
     
    Zeldman likes this.
  32. Clip4

    Clip4 Final Approach

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2013
    Messages:
    6,645
    Location:
    A Rubber Room

    Display name:
    Cli4ord
    I hunt ducks and they fly when it is what pilots consider zero /zero. What all birds don't like is flying in rain.
     
  33. Zeldman

    Zeldman Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2014
    Messages:
    14,042
    Location:
    high desert NM

    Display name:
    Billy
    In Alaska I have seen ravens flying with frost on the leading edge of their wings and nose. I am guessing it came from the moisture in their breath.
     
  34. Fred Thomas

    Fred Thomas Pre-Flight

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2017
    Messages:
    32

    Display name:
    Shearsinistral
    Perhaps an urban legend but I remember reading that seabirds will congregate in the eye of hurricanes until they dissipate over land. That's some serious flight skill.
     
  35. xt2190

    xt2190 Filing Flight Plan

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2017
    Messages:
    10

    Display name:
    xt2190
    I wonder how the IFR certified birds report icing conditions to one another ;)
     
    Steven Untet and Zeldman like this.
  36. wanttaja

    wanttaja En-Route

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2008
    Messages:
    3,596
    Location:
    Seattle

    Display name:
    Ron Wanttaja
    With a Tweet.

    Ron Wanttaja
     
  37. comanchepilot

    comanchepilot En-Route

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2010
    Messages:
    4,020
    Location:
    SoCal

    Display name:
    Joe Farrell, yeah, him
    gotta understand that wx is too low for birds maybe 100 minutes out of the year in the average location - they just stay put.
     
  38. tinerj

    tinerj Cleared for Takeoff

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2012
    Messages:
    1,348

    Display name:
    tinerj
    I've see birds do interesting things. Geese that nest in narrow holes high in bluffs along the MissourI River.

    Once I saw two black birds step off a cliff, kept their wings folded and fell straight down for about 30 feet, then popped open their wings as parachutes to soft touchdown on a narrow ledge.
     
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2017
  39. Sundancer

    Sundancer En-Route

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2015
    Messages:
    2,986

    Display name:
    Sundog
    Collided with a flight of two Canadian geese in a 172; night, marginal VMC/light IMC, about 700 AGL, right after dropping below some scud. Took a couple loaves of bread to the lake a few days later, to feed the geese, as way of apology and atonement. Geese, ducks, and other B1RDs are people. . .piegeons and gulls, on the other hand, are sky rats.
     
  40. StevieTimes

    StevieTimes Line Up and Wait

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2010
    Messages:
    877
    Location:
    Minnesota

    Display name:
    StevieTimes
    Tower told them to squawk 1200, they are still outside making noise to this day.