Gannet missile technology

As I child I read a book called Magic of the Senses by Vitus B. Droscher, a popular science exploration of the senses of animals. The basic theme I remember was that it doesn’t matter what humans have invented, animals got their first by evolution by natural selection. I think it did have atomic power as a noteworthy exception. I think of the first wonderment I had at realising the super-senses of animals whenever I see a Gannet diving.

Gannet diving - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

Spectacular, aren’t they? Luckily this one is going to miss the unsuspecting Puffins below. This is the same bird a fraction of a second earlier:

Gannet diving - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

Their ability to pitch a dive perfectly and to steer until the last minute before they fold their wings away is honed to perfection. The Gannets which didn’t pitch it perfectly clearly didn’t have as many baby Gannets in the next generation.

And this? A composite image with the phases of the dive superimposed on the landscape:

Gannet diving - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

It’s Gannet missile technology.

Feel free to leave a Reply :)