Science: Our Feathered Friends

One of history's weirdest bits of birdlore was made public last fortnight:

To develop bird-proof windshields for airplanes, Westinghouse shoots previously electrocuted poultry from a 20-ft. air gun at a pane of testing glass.

Ducks, geese, gulls, eagles, buzzards and other birds are a hazard to aviation. A bird once smashed through a plane windshield, burst the metal bulkhead behind the pilot, hurtled the length of the cabin, broke into the baggage compartment in the tail. A 15-lb. turkey easily breaks conventional safety glass even at speeds under 100 m.p.h. Westinghouse shoots its chickens and turkeys at velocities up to 400 m.p.h....

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