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Darren, you are sick.  Besides that, I like you.

   Nude baby birds fall out of trees all the time.  If they survive the fall, a 
predator usually gets them anyways.
   BATS, however.  Nude baby bats fall to the floor of a nursery cave, and 
though the predators are lying in wait to take advantage of this frequent 
occurence, bat mommas have it so a babysitting bat will come down and pick up 
the baby bat and return it to the cave wall.  Bats survive this kind of fall, 
but then bats have wings even with no fluff.


>A viable experiment might therefore be to catch some of these chicks, pre- 
>leaving nest, nudify them (new word?), then see if they survive the fall? I'm 
>sure most of us (hopefully all) would petition against such an experiment, but 
>this whole sequence of events *might* prove that 'any amount of fluff' is 
>beneficial to little critters that fall.. it is to these animals anyway. But 
>then, seeing as such specific behaviour was _probably_ not too important in the
>day-to-day adventures of bird ancestors, perhaps it's quite irrelevant..