PerspectiveEcology

Bird Navigation--Computing Orthodromes

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Science  12 Jan 2001:
Vol. 291, Issue 5502, pp. 264-265
DOI: 10.1126/science.1058147

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Summary

There are many theories about how migrating birds navigate as Wehner explains in his Perspective. He discusses new findings obtained with radar on a Canadian coast guard icebreaker vessel, which show that Arctic seabirds are able to faithfully follow the great-circle (orthodrome) routes of far northern latitudes most probably by steering with their sun compass while keeping their internal clock out of phase with local time ( Alerstam et al.).