lifestyle

Gliding animals

380 species

Gliding flight is heavier-than-air flight without the use of thrust and is employed by gliding animals. Birds in particular use gliding flight to minimize their use of energy. Birds can alternate periods of gliding with periods of soaring in rising air, and so spend a considerable time airborne with a minimal expenditure of energy. The great frigatebird in particular is capable of continuous flights up to several weeks. To assist gliding, some mammals have evolved a structure called the patagium. This is a membranous structure found stretched between a range of body parts. It is most highly developed in bats. For similar reasons to birds, bats can glide efficiently. Other mammals such as gliding possums and flying squirrels also glide using a patagium, but with much poorer efficiency than bats. They cannot gain height.
This is a part of the Wikipedia article used under the Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 3.0 Unported License (CC-BY-SA). The full text of the article is here → https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gliding_flight#Gliding_animals 
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Gliding flight is heavier-than-air flight without the use of thrust and is employed by gliding animals. Birds in particular use gliding flight to minimize their use of energy. Birds can alternate periods of gliding with periods of soaring in rising air, and so spend a considerable time airborne with a minimal expenditure of energy. The great frigatebird in particular is capable of continuous flights up to several weeks. To assist gliding, some mammals have evolved a structure called the patagium. This is a membranous structure found stretched between a range of body parts. It is most highly developed in bats. For similar reasons to birds, bats can glide efficiently. Other mammals such as gliding possums and flying squirrels also glide using a patagium, but with much poorer efficiency than bats. They cannot gain height.
This is a part of the Wikipedia article used under the Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 3.0 Unported License (CC-BY-SA). The full text of the article is here → https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gliding_flight#Gliding_animals 
Source