Flight performance in complex environments


Although our understanding of the mechanics of animal flight has improved dramatically since the days when we thought that bumblebees in flight defied the laws of physics, we still know relatively little about how variable, natural environments affect insect flight. I study how two important aspects of natural environments - variable wind flows and structural complexity - affect flying insects.



Bumblebee (Bombus impatiens) workers navigating to an artificial flower through turbulent wind