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Re: New bird /pterosaur flight paper in PLoS ONE



P.S. A 150 Kg Quetzalcoatlus northropi (150 Kg gives the optimum wing loading for the animal's aspect ratio and can be considered an average weight rather than a maximum weight) with a 20% flight muscle fraction, flap-gliding at 0.973 Hz in no-lift conditions at an altitude of 100 meters will need to flap 82% of the time in order to maintain altitude. Since you normally can find lift atmospheric lift sources within a mile, that means that flapping might be required for about 50 seconds during the first minute with soaring thereafter. Maximum range speed when flap-gliding is about 33.3 m/s or 74.5 miles/hr. Sounds quite doable to me.
JimC