Birds have different flying patterns, but usually their motives are unknown. Now the mystery behind their V-formation flying has come to light.

Researchers in the UK fitted data loggers to a flock of rare birds that were being trained to migrate by following a microlight. They found that the migrating birds carefully position their wingtips and sync their flapping, apparently to hook the former bird’s updraft and save energy during flight. The surprising fact is that the birds know how this formation contributes to the flock as a whole.

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