The mystery of an area in New York state which has been labelled as the “Bermuda Triangle” of the homing pigeon may have finally been solved.
Scientists have been baffled for years as to why these excellent navigators get lost when they head out from this particular site. But researchers now believe that birds are able to use low frequency sounds to move around, and they can’t hear it in this location in North-East America.
However other scientists have stated that they don’t believe that this theory is correct, and that the debate over how homing pigeons move so efficiently is still up for debate.
Since the 1960s, when Professor Bill Keeton from Cornell University released birds throughout New York state in order to figure out how these birds were able to return home from areas they’d never visited in the past, but an area near Jersey Hill, near Ithaca, saw the birds become disorientated.
However, Dr Jonathan Hagstrum, who lead the research has come up with the following explanation, stating, “The way birds navigate is that they use a compass and they use a map. The compass is usually the position of the Sun or the Earth’s magnetic field, but the map has been unknown for decades.”
“I have found they are using sound as their map … and this will tell them where they are relative to their home,” added the doctor.
This sound is at such a low-frequency that it is below human hearing, and he went on to explain that it originates from the ocean and can be picked up anywhere on Earth. It was disrupted on 13 August 1969 because of either a “wind shear” or “temperature inversion” and caused the birds to become aimless.