Animals and Homing
Name: Belle M.
How do birds like homing pigeons know where to go to a
place that is hundreds of miles away? Cats and dogs can do this to does
it have to do with the earth's magnetic fields
This is one of the great mysteries of the animal world. I don't think anyone knows the
answer for sure yet, despite much research, but from what we know so far, it is probably
a combination of many different clues, depending on the species, the area, the season,
and the weather. There is evidence that pigeons and some other birds can sense magnetic
fields, also some pretty clear evidence that many birds use the stars and sun to help
them. Simple visual clues may also be used for short distances or over familiar territory.
If you check a good library or do an internet search on "homing" or "bird migration" you
should turn up many interesting references.
Click here to return to the Zoology Archives
Update: June 2012