This is where birding meets math.
These birds are often called “upside-down birds,” but maybe they just have no regard for orientation. I enjoyed playing with Boy’s surfaces, Möbius strips, cross-caps, and various Klein bottles for this piece (thanks math Twitter for responding to non-orientable surface requests). I decided on a figure-eight immersion of a Klein bottle.
Indigo buntings are majestically beautiful birds. I had a hard time deciding the direction to go in doodling this one, so I dug up a lot of fun facts: A group of indigo buntings is called a sacrifice, mural, or decoration. Their indigo color comes from the structure within their feathers rather than pigment. These …
I found out that it is World Penguin Day, so I did a quick sketch – enjoy! If you are a maker and want to make a penguin game – try Hex-a-Huddle
Here is another bird in the series – Microcosm Oystercatchers. These are one of my favorite birds. I often see them in the black basalt cobbles on the coast with their fluorescent beaks. I had a hard time with where I wanted to go with this piece initially and went back to gaskets (something I …
Another bird in the series! This one is a little luney. The lunes of Alhazen have the same area as the triangle. Note: Image was updated from the original post to fix an error
All of the great horned owls that have sat with me for hours of my life came to mind. I really struggled with what math peice I wanted to do here. I went with lift. I used multiple images, including my own in composing this. The vortices off the back of the owl are inspired …
These birds utterly amaze me with their gigantic wings, synchronous motion, and high-up flight. They really are a joy to watch in flight, feeding, and landings.
When contemplating a spirally constellation of twin primes, you may ask, “Just how many are there? – Infinite?” The Twin Prime Conjecture would say so.
Another Math bird in the series! These little chickadees make the cutest noise. They have had a brood every year in the neighbors gum tree. When I see their rollercoaster flight, I think of slope fields.
Another Math bird in the series! This one was inspired by my 17yr old discussing her math homework of deriving the volume for a parallelepiped. So of course It spawned the thought of parallelepiped sand castles.
Just like solar eclipses, Vaux’s swifts really are a life experience. Watching them funnel into a chimney in a vortex of flitting feathers is just amazing. I had the wonderful experience of watching them funnel into the chimney at dusk in Salem, Oregon (my home). So here is the next math bird in the series …
I enjoyed watching the swallows this summer. I couldn’t help but imagine that they were packing circles in their little birdhouse portal. Life is full of such precious moments.
Another math bird in the series. I associate these tanagers with oranges, summer, and warmth. This year I enjoyed seeing them in our woods as I sat on a fallen white oak in the middle of a forest.
Another math bird in the series. This one I struggled with what to do and include, feel free to send any comments my way. I am still contemplating if it is really done. I miss hearing cardinal calls from when I lived in the east and watching them out on my grandpa’s farm with their …
Happy Tau Day! I have created another math bird piece for today with the inspiration of Spotted Towhees on my morning walk.
The Pigeonhole Principle merged with the contemplation of black holes today. I envisioned Fractal Kitty at the whiteboard with this one, but went without the kitty today – enjoy.
After watching the neighborhood waxwings consume their fill of berries prior to moving on, I pondered a different kind of a two-body problem:
i-bis (white faced ibis) on the complex plane.
Maybe we should start naming all math formulas and theorems after birds. This one wouldn’t have to change under this new renaming… I do love being able to find an area of a triangle given the lengths of its sides. Heron’s formula information: https://mathworld.wolfram.com/HeronsFormula.html
I run and see the crows daily. They splash, play, talk, and announce the sunset. I see them in yards flipping leaves together and can’t help but feel that they are calculating probabilities. Of what, I am not sure – maybe the probability of finding a nut, bug, or piece of pizza. No matter what, …
This was inspired by my backyard Gold-phi-nches (goldfinches) that cluster on my sunflowers, brighten my days, and provide hours of entertainment. As someone who has been isolated pre-covid, I am so grateful for the joy that birds bring me. I imagine the flocks propagating sunflowers far and wide to spread the Phi-lowers’ beauty everywhere. Side-note: …
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