The effect of wind speed and wetting on thermal resistance of the barn owl (Tyto alba). II: Coat resistance
Review articleOpen access

Abstract1.1. The thermal resistance of barn owl (Tyto alba) plumage was determined from measurements of heat flux and temperature using a model in a wind tunnel.2.2. The mean resistance of four barn owl coats was 398 s m−1 and wetting the coat reduced coat resistance to 374 s m−1. Resistance decreased linearly with increasing wind speed from 0–7 m s−1.3.3. Half of the heat transfer within barn owl coats occurred by conduction through the feather elements, the remaining heat transfer was due to molecular diffusion of air within the coat (30%), radiation (10%) and free convection (10%).4.4. Thermal properties of barn owl plumage were comparable with previous findings on avian coats.

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