• Question: why dont we have wings?

    Asked by fayeadamou to Cat, Daz, Holly, Johnson, Pamela on 22 Jun 2011.
    • Photo: Pamela Lithgow

      Pamela Lithgow answered on 15 Jun 2011:

      Hi fayeadamou,
      Hmmmm….an interesting question. I can think of a few reasons but I am not really definate why we don’t have wings. I am also guessing if you are asking about wings that really you would like to know why we don’t fly! One reason is that we have evolved from animals that did not have wings and we have never lived in an enviroment that made us develop wings. But if we were to develop wings I think there would be a number of issues one is that we are heavy, birds are really really light compared to us this is because they have hollow bones to make them lighter so they can fly. So there would be alot of weight to lift up. So to lift up all the weight we would have to have really big muscles. On a normal bird the muscles that hold the wings are the breast muscles which attach to a special bone on their front (a bit like you chest bone). So we would have to have massive muscles and a huge bone to attach it to.
      So this I think is why we don’t have wings!
      Hope that helps (and makes sense!)
      Pam 🙂

    • Photo: Cat O'Connor

      Cat O'Connor answered on 15 Jun 2011:

      Hi again Fayeadamou,

      Another great question but I think Pam has answered it really well! (well done pam :D)

      Sometimes I wish I had wings, it would make my travel to work everyday a lot faster. But if evolved from animals with wings, would we also get beaks??? I don’t think i’d like that!!


    • Photo: Darren Braddick

      Darren Braddick answered on 22 Jun 2011:

      Hi fayeadamou!

      We do not have wings because we have arms and hands! Actually you will notice that any animal with wings never has hands as well. It is because at some very early point in evolution, some creatures kept wings and some lost them. In fact, it looks like many ancient creatures had wings – this is because wings are related to flippers which are found on some sea animals (like seals or penguins). Very early in evolution, ancient dinosaurs in the sea came to land. They lost their flippers and became more like lizards, but some kept them, and after millions of years they became feathered and they learned how to fly!!

      Humans however took a different route.. And maybe we should be happy for it. I would love to be able to fly, but our hands are what make us human and give us the power to use tools and manipulate and change our world. Without hands, humans would never have become so intelligent and strong. In fact, the biggest difference between us and our related species are that we walk on just two feet, and not four limbs. This means two of our limbs – our hands – can be used to change the world.

      I hope this helps answer your question!