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Discovery Magazine 06/01/2012

How Do Hummingbirds Flap Their Wings So Fast?

by  Digger Doug

Dear Jesse:

That’s a great question. Some hummingbirds can flap their wings 100 times or more per second. That is really fast! As you probably know, the theory of evolution teaches that hummingbirds evolved from less advanced birds, which supposedly evolved from animals millions of years earlier that did not even have wings.

If you were to make a robotic bird that could flap its wings 100 times per second, no one would ever conclude that your bird was the result of an explosion in a workshop or of some other accidental, naturalistic cause. Why would anyone think that mindless evolution, time, and random, chance processes could produce such amazing flying abilities as those found in hummingbirds?

The reason hummingbirds are capable of flapping their wings so fast, like little hovering helicopters, is because the great Creator gave them a perfectly designed body. Part of this design includes extremely strong, resilient muscles that are associated with flying, such as the pectoral and supracoracoideus  (soo-pruh-cor-uh-COI-dee-us) muscles. These muscles make up a greater percentage of the overall weight of hummingbirds than most other birds, and contribute greatly in moving the wings of hummingbirds so quickly.

Thanks for writing!

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