Turns out flying squirrels can fly while holding giant pine cones


Originally published at: http://boingboing.net/2016/12/29/turns-out-flying-squirrels-can.html


Hey, Rocky! Watch me pull a pinecone outta my hat!


This is actually a young squirrel being trained to fly. The parents will later reveal that the pine cone was never magical, and the power was in him all along.


What is your name?

What is your quest?

What is the average air-speed velocity of a squirrel carrying a pine cone?


I wouldn't say an opened up pine cone is heavy, though it is cumbersome to carry in your mouth.

What are they doing with them? Opened ones don't have seeds.


Arts and Crafts back at the nest? Winter is long and dull.


This week, on a very special Hoarders:

Narrator: "This flying squirrel collects pine cones."

Thomas: "Well I found a neat looking one a few years ago, and since then I started picking up any pine cone I could fine."

Thomas' mother, Judy: "We love Thomas, but he has a problem."

Thomas: "I really don't think there is anything wrong with it. It's a hobby."

Judy: "Thomas, maybe we could get rid of the ones that are damaged on one side, let's start with those."

Thomas: "No, I need those! Those are my special ones!"

Captain Wilson of the Squirrel Fire Brigade No. 29: "Sweet Jesus, this massive pile is one big tinder box. One errant cigarette and the whole place will just go up!"

Helper One: "Holy bleeep... the smell. It's like a pine tree died in here and then fungus and insects slowly consumed it over time."

Judy: "Oh my god, what is that? That isn't a pine cone."

Helper Two: "Whose body is that, Thomas?"

Thomas: "None of you understand my art!"

Announcer: "Hoarders, New this Tuesday at 8, 7 central."


It would be an improvement over some of those shows.


Leaked: The new DARPA-Squirrel brigade.


But how fast can an unladen flying squirrel fly? How about while carrying a coconut? What about African and European varieties?


My, what big nuts you have!


The Men Who Stare At Squirrels


This entire thread is full of win.


It's not surprising - it's not so much "flying" as "controlled falling." I find that I can fall just as easily with or without a pine cone in my mouth.


That's not a giant pine cone. It is normal sized.


You should read the article. It's incredibly sophisticated flying that through application of technique to a dynamically, constantly adjusting anatomy results in "the aerodynamic features of heavy transport planes, agile military jets, movable-rotor helicopters, flexible-wing parachute gliders, and many innovations we’ve yet to achieve."


Nothing up my sleeve!


It's practice for the bombing run.


"Ponderosa or Lodgepole?"

"I don't know - aaargh!"


So it's not just fancy falling. It's really, really fancy falling.
Seriously though, it's quite interesting.