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Magnetic Navigation in Pigeons: Possibilities and Problems

  • A. J. Lednor
Part of the Proceedings in Life Sciences book series (LIFE SCIENCES)

Abstract

Recent evidence has led to a renewed interest in the possibility that pigeons may gain navigational information from the earth’s magnetic field. The various types of positional information available from the earth’s field are summarized and possible position-fixing strategies discussed. A form of bicoordinate navigation might explain some of the magnetic effects observed but the existence of large scale regional magnetic anomalies makes it difficult to imagine how any such position-fixing strategy could provide useful navigational information. Vector navigation, based partly on the pigeon’s magnetic compass could, in principal, provide a bird with position-fixing information, but this hypothesis does not readily explain many of the observed magnetic effects on pigeon orientation.

Keywords

Magnetic Anomaly Magnetic Storm Release Site Magnetic Element Magnetic Compass 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1982

Authors and Affiliations

  • A. J. Lednor
    • 1
  1. 1.Section of Neurobiology and BehaviorCornell UniversityIthacaUSA

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