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News From the Field
Caltech Scientists Discover Mechanism for Wind Detection in Fruit Flies

March 11, 2009

researcher with vial of fruit flies Tiny, lightweight fruit flies need to know when it's windy out so they can steady themselves and avoid being knocked off their feet or blown off course. But how do they figure out that it's time to hunker down? According to a team led by Caltech scientists, the flies have evolved a specialized population of neurons in their antennae that let them know not only when the wind is blowing, but also the direction from which it is coming. Full Story

California Institute of Technology

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The National Science Foundation (NSF) is an independent federal agency that supports fundamental research and education across all fields of science and engineering. In fiscal year (FY) 2015, its budget is $7.3 billion. NSF funds reach all 50 states through grants to nearly 2,000 colleges, universities and other institutions. Each year, NSF receives about 48,000 competitive proposals for funding, and makes about 11,000 new funding awards. NSF also awards about $626 million in professional and service contracts yearly.

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