A 250 g bird flying along at 5.6 m/s sees a 7.0 g insect heading straight toward it with a speed of 30 m/s (as measured by an observer on the ground, not by the bird). The bird opens its mouth wide and enjoys a nice lunch.  What is the bird's speed immediately after swallowing?

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Asked Oct 15, 2019
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A 250 g bird flying along at 5.6 m/s sees a 7.0 g insect heading straight toward it with a speed of 30 m/s (as measured by an observer on the ground, not by the bird). The bird opens its mouth wide and enjoys a nice lunch.  What is the bird's speed immediately after swallowing?

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Expert Answer

Step 1

Given values:

Mass of the bird, M = 250 g = 0.25 kg

Speed of the bird, U = 5.6 m/s

Mass of the insect, m = 7.0 g = 0.007 kg

Speed of the insect, u = -30 m/s       (- sign is taken because insect is moving opposite to the bird)

Let the bird’s immediate speed after swallowing be V

Step 2

After swallowing the insect, the bird and the insect would move with the same speed.

From the conservation of momentum:

Total initial momentum = total final momentum

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MU + ти 3 (М+т)V

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Step 3

Plugging in the gi...

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MU + тu 3 (M+m)V 0.25x 5.6+0.007(-30)=(0.25+0.007)v V 4.6 m/s

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