Special Issue: A Century of Comparative Biomechanics: Emerging and Historical Perspectives on an Interdisciplinary Field
Emerging biological insights enabled by high-resolution 3D motion data: promises, perspectives and pitfalls
Summary: The development of high-resolution, three-dimensional (3D) motion data has sparked significant paradigm shifts in comparative biomechanics, enabling the emergence of new questions as well as the reinterpretation of long-standing scientific concerns.
Summary: Studying joint mobility, the set of all configurations that a joint can passively assume, can empower us to better tackle investigations of articular form–function relationships.
The bumpy road ahead: the role of substrate roughness on animal walking and a proposed comparative metric
Summary: Rough substrates influence animal walking based on the relative, not absolute, scale of substrate features; this Review proposes terminology and metrics to enhance comparative study.
Biomechanics, motor control and dynamic models of the soft limbs of the octopus and other cephalopods
Summary: This Review summarizes experimental studies of the biomechanics, neuromuscular control and dynamic models of octopus and other cephalopod arms.
Summary: Flexibility represents a hidden axis of diversity among fishes that may have substantial impacts on swimming performance.
Jumping over fences: why field- and laboratory-based biomechanical studies can and should learn from each other
Summary: This Review considers how study setting influences the selection of animals, behaviors and methodologies for studying animal motion.
Summary: Tracking wild cheetahs is a challenging problem that pushes sensor technology to its limits and, consequently, a timeline of cheetah locomotion research also describes the evolution of field biomechanics methodology.
Summary: Biological insights have played a central role in shaping the modern aeronautical field, yet there remain several areas for which a bio-informed approach may offer novel solutions including miniaturization, efficiency and autonomy.
Integrating biomechanics in evolutionary studies, with examples from the amphidromous goby model system
Summary: Comparisons of biomechanical performance for species of amphidromous goby fishes during feeding, adhesion, fast-start escapes and waterfall climbing across environmental, ontogenetic and geographic gradients provide ecological and evolutionary insights.
Summary: Small organisms use spring propulsion and latch mediation to control cascading processes of energy release, ultimately transforming small amounts of energy into energy-dense events.
Summary: Physical laws and ecological interactions determine how morphology affects biomechanical performance, which can influence the evolution of biological form and function.
The importance of comparative physiology: mechanisms, diversity and adaptation in skeletal muscle physiology and mechanics
Summary: A review of comparative muscle physiology highlights diversity that both supports and refutes classic theories of contraction, and suggests future directions to advance our understanding of muscle contraction and adaptation.
Summary: This Review examines how comparative biomechanics has transformed our understanding of the avian bill, from feeding biomechanics to vocalization and mechanosensory structures.
Flexible locomotion in complex environments: the influence of species, speed and sensory feedback on panarthropod inter-leg coordination
Summary: This Review examines kinematic data from various panarthropod species to explore how sensory feedback interplays with leg pattern generators to drive flexible locomotion over complex terrain.
Summary: Three-dimensional digital methods useful for the study of tetrapod locomotor biomechanics have matured in recent decades. Here, we summarise their progress, relevance and potential.
Can animals tune tissue mechanics in response to changing environments caused by anthropogenic impacts?
Summary: In some species, skeletal muscle performance alters in response to long-term temperature changes; other anthropogenic environmental changes, including pollutants, might also alter animal tissue mechanics, locomotor performance and behaviour.
The science and technology of kinematic measurements in a century of Journal of Experimental Biology
Summary: This Review traces the evolution of technology in kinematic measurements over the past century and considers how those changes have influenced the nature of articles published in JEB.
Going against the flow: bumblebees prefer to fly upwind and display more variable kinematics when flying downwind
Summary: Data on thousands of flights from foraging bees show that bees prefer to fly upwind, and that body angle and speed become more variable when bees fly downwind.
Nectar feeding beyond the tongue: hummingbirds drink using phase-shifted bill opening, flexible tongue flaps and wringing at the tips
Summary: Live visualization of hummingbird bill movements and intraoral space reveals how they transfer nectar from the tongue to the throat – the eco-evolutionary implications of these findings are discussed.
Summary: Significant diversity in the length–force relationships of obliquely striated muscle, both within and between taxa, calls into question long-held assumptions about the factors that favored the evolution of oblique striation.