The art of flying.

Form is emptiness. Emptiness is form. — The heart sutra.

A stunning short film documenting a murmuration of starlings.

Whilst science has not yet completely explained the exact mechanism that allows unimaginable numbers of birds to respond to each other with such swirling simultaneous unity, a research team of theoretical physicists published a paper in 2012 that found that a change of direction (known as a critical transition) in one bird was reflected by the 6 or 7 birds nearest it. And so on out through the flock.

This range of 6 to 7 birds was found to provide the optimal balance between cohesiveness and the discrete, separate formations.

Short film about “murmurations”: the mysterious flights of the Common Starling. It is still unknown how the thousands of birds are able to fly in such dense swarms without colliding. Every night the starlings gather at dusk to perform their stunning air show.

Because of the relatively warm winter of 2014/2015, the starlings stayed in the Netherlands instead of migrating southwards. This gave filmmaker Jan van IJken the opportunity to film one of the most spectacular and amazing natural phenomena on earth.

Reference: https://www.mnn.com/earth-matters/animals/stories/the-incredible-science-behind-starling-murmurations

Silence. 

If we were not so singleminded about keeping our lives moving, and for once could do nothing, Perhaps a huge silence might interrupt this sadness of never understanding ourselves and of threatening ourselves with death.

Pablo Neruda (as translated by Stephen Mitchell) 


Photo taken with my iPhone in the small town of Budgewoi 112 kilometres north of Sydney.

Kelly and I were walking back to our hotel from dinner, crossing a wooden bridge I looked out and noticed this father and son fishing off a jetty across the river. You can just see a very patient Pelican that floated expectantly awaiting any unwanted catches.