Re: birding-aus Seasickness - the pelagic disease

Subject: Re: birding-aus Seasickness - the pelagic disease
From: Paul Taylor <>
Date: Fri, 21 Jan 2000 11:56:16 +1100
For those who didn't watch FAQ on the ABC last night, "seasickness"
occurs when the motion sensors in your inner ear and the perceived
motion from your eyes give the brain conflicting signals.  So there
are really two different ways to get seasick:

1)  Seeing, but not feeling, motion.  I personally find Imax films
on their giant wraparound screens make me quite naseous - they love
the sweeping helicopter shots (e.g. Antartica.)  "The Blair Witch
Project" has apparently made many people sick.

2)  Feeling, but not seeing, motion.  Classic seasickness - scanning
the horizon for Cookilarias etc. makes it look like you aren't moving
much, but your ears (and stomach) say otherwise.

(A third way is to feel *and* see motion - your brain gets matching
signals, but your stomach contents are churning.  Vomiting is the
body's defence against poisoning, and seasickness mimicks symptoms
you might experience from eating something bad.)

One trick I learnt on the daily train trip to RMIT when I was studying
that also works for pelagics is to minimize the motion of your head
by "surfing" the boat and keeping your head as upright as possible.
As long as you concentrate on the horizon and ignore the apparent
(actual!) motion of the boat, the signals from your eyes and ears
will closely match - no seasickness.

   Paul Taylor                           Veni, vidi, tici -
                    I came, I saw, I ticked.

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