Visual control of solo and group flight in birds: encoding local and global cues for agile manoeuvring.

Andrea Gaede (primary)
Comparative Biomedical Sciences
Royal Veterinary College
Richard Bomphrey (secondary)
Comparative Biomedical Sciences
Royal Veterinary College


To manoeuvre successfully through their environments, flying birds execute rapid responses to numerous visual cues, including predators, conspecifics, anthropogenic and natural features. Birds use motion parallax, which combines local and global motion cues, to measure distances and identify obstacles in flight. Behavioural algorithms linking sensory cues with motor commands can be used to describe repeatable flight behaviours that respond to dynamic motion parallax. Drawing from neurobiology and biomechanics, we can investigate the neural coding and behavioural responses to motion parallax that underpin flight. Addressing fundamental questions about this system is key for advancing new technologies and avenues of research.


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Genes, development and STEM* approaches to biology
Area of Biology
Techniques & Approaches
EngineeringImage ProcessingMathematics / StatisticsMicroscopy / ElectrophysiologyMolecular BiologySimulation / Modelling