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Re: Quetzalcoatlus could not jump into the air

Clair Ossian <clastic@verizon.net> wrote:

> So this is like the famous Sikorsky quote about bumblebees?
> According to the laws of aerodynamics, the bumblebee can't fly, but the
> bumblebee doesn't know anything about the laws of aerodynamics, so it goes
> ahead and flies anyway.

I didn't know this quote came from Sikorsky.  In any case, it's an
urban myth.  Torkel Weis-Fogh (Cambridge University) demonstrated in
the 1970's how bumblebees can fly.

It's unfortunate that this 'according to the laws of aerodynamics
bumblebees cannot fly' myth still gets perpetuated.  Often it's used
mischievously as an argument for why scientists shouldn't be trusted -
along the lines of "But scientists tell us it's impossible for
bumblebees to fly.  So what do you scientists know."  Ironically, it
was rigorous and detailed scientific study that revealed just how
bumblebees do fly.  I don't doubt that Clair knows all this - my
response is not directed at him.  Considering that this persistent
myth has been raised, I think it's a good idea to point out that it
was totally refuted four decades ago.