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Flight: The Genius of Birds Premieres to a Full House

Paul-and-Ann.jpgIt was a busy night yesterday at the Museum of Flight in Seattle as we welcomed over 230 guests, as well as our Summer Seminar students, to the premiere of the new Illustra documentary Flight: The Genius of Birds.

Surrounded by the wonders of human engineering in the museum, attendees were eager to learn about the far superior engineering of our avian friends -- which viewers of the film described as "stunning" and "amazing."

The crowd was enthralled as Flight showed the profound beauty and wisdom of the bird's design -- from the brilliant navigation system of the Arctic Tern that guides it from pole to pole along the most energy-efficient route possible, to the striking and mysterious movement patterns of a flock of European Starlings.

IMG_3254.JPGThe film was followed by a stimulating Q&A session with Center for Science & Culture Fellow Dr. Paul Nelson and Biologic Institute senior research scientist Dr. Ann Gauger, who are both prominently featured in the film.

As Dr. Gauger emphasizes, the real "genius" in the bird's design is apparent not only in the details -- such as the hummingbird's tongue, or the barbs and barbules of a bird's feather -- but in the cohesion of these many precise and optimized components. Attendees stuck around after the showing to mingle with CSC staff and Fellows -- such as Michael Behe and Michael Denton (that is Dr. Denton on the right).

Thanks to all who came -- hope to see you at the next CSC event!