Why do some animals, especially Birds, move so Robot-like?


Another example other than birds are squirrels, for example. To clarify what I mean: If you make a noise around them, these animals will suddenly, and very quickly, turn their head towards you. Then, after a couple of seconds, they will turn it away again, in the same sudden, unsmooth way. How come they can’t make smooth movements, and instead just move like a robot?

In: 9

They’re kinda defenseless animals if you think about it so their ability to move out of flight is their defensive strength, that’s how i’d look at it

Eyes can not see when they are moving. You are actually blind when you move your eyes to look at something else. To reduce the time you are blind your eyes move suddenly and then stop, just like a robot. You do not notice this much as you tend to not observe the movement of the eyes very much, and even when you do then you do not consider this abnormal. But birds can not move their eyeball in their head. To look at something they need to move their entire head. So whenever they look at something they have to move their entire head quickly and then stop to look at it. That gives them a very robotic moving look.

For squirrels I am not quite sure but I think it have to do with avoiding predators. Animals are much better at spotting movements rather then shapes and colors. So to avoid getting spotted it is important to move as little as possible. When you have to move you therefore have to move a lot while you still can. This is what squirrels have adapted to doing.


Some prey animals will “freeze” when disturbed. It’s believed that they’re instinctively trying to “hide” by blending in with their surroundings.

Rabbits do this, so do deer.

(It works better for rabbits when they’re on brown leaf litter in a forest and not in the middle of a green suburban lawn… but hey, nobody ever said they were smart. Good thing they reproduce quickly.)

Maybe that’s part of what you’re describing?

I remember learning about this in school, its basically because they cant move their eyeballs like how we can. So any movement of their vision they need to jerk their whole head.