Clutha Leader - - YOUR LOCAL NEWS -

Sci­en­tists have long de­bated why mi­grat­ing birds fly in a V for­ma­tion.

Maybe its to ‘‘draft’’ each other, to catch the one in front’s up­draft, to save en­ergy dur­ing the flight.

Maybe it’s for pro­tec­tion - safety in num­bers.

Maybe they’re just fol­low­ing the leader.

But what hap­pens when the leader gets tired?

It seems sen­si­ble - and birds are much brainier than we think - that they would swap po­si­tions to give each other a break.

They also honk a lot.

Maybe it’s to give each other en­cour­age­ment: ‘‘Come on you guys, it’s not far now.’’

(Or: ‘‘Look out, large aero­plane to star­board.’’)

Farmer-au­thor Doug Avery, who wrote a book about re­silience, says in times of ad­ver­sity, such as drought, you’ve got to choose your Vmem­bers.

You’ll carry them, and when you can’t, they’ll carry you - and you should let them.

It’s about shar­ing the bur­den. Who would be in your V? Mary-Jo To­hill

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