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Re: The origin of flight: from the water up (still short!)
David Marjanovic wrote:
> Ruben's calculation doesn't take into account how asymmetric the
> feathers were;
Keep in mind that feather asymmetry doesn't have much of anything to do with
flight capability as long as the shaft is strong enough to prevent flutter.
Asymmetry has quite a bit to do with the biological energy cost of the moult in
flying birds, but not in flightless birds, and I suspect that may be one of the
reasons that flying birds tend to have asymmetric feathers. If you so desire,
you can 'build' a flying feather that is asymmetric in the 'wrong' direction, if
you just beef the shaft up to support it.