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Empirical estimates of body drag of large waterfowl and raptors

June 16, 2010

Measurements of the body frontal area of some large living waterfowl (Anatidae) and raptors (Falconiformes) were found to vary with the two-thirds power of the body mass, with no distinction between the two groups. Wind tunnel measurements on frozen bodies gave drag coefficients ranging from 0.25 to 0.39, in the Reynolds number range 145 000 to 462 000. Combining these observations with those of Prior (1984), which extended to lower Reynolds numbers, a practical rule is proposed for choosing a value of the body drag coefficient for use in performance estimates.

Citation Information

Publication Year 1988
Title Empirical estimates of body drag of large waterfowl and raptors
Authors C.J. Pennycuick, H.H. Obrecht, M.R. Fuller
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Journal of Experimental Biology
Index ID 5220765
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Patuxent Wildlife Research Center