Florian Muijres, Michael Elzinga, Johan Melis, and Michael Dickinson are co-authors on a paper recently published in Science. Their findings show that when evading a predator, fruit flies use their bodies and wings to alter course in less than one one-hundredth of a second (faster than what anyone had imagined!).
Armed with this discovery, the next question the Dickinson lab would like to investigate is how the brain and muscles control these remarkably fast and accurate elusive maneuvers.
A fruit fly, Drosophila hydei, flaps its wings 200 times a second during normal flight and even faster when taking evasive action. Credit: F Muijres/F van Breugel/U of Washington