Please enjoy my most recent research effort studying the birdularity of mythological creatures. This largely came out of work accomplished last week while at an OSIRIS-REx team meeting. It was truly a group effort, and we are really happy with the outcome. The full manuscript can be downloaded at the link below.

Quantitative assessment of creature birdularity with implications for planetary feature nomeclature

J. L. Molaro1, E. R. Jawin2, I. M. Reasor3, R. L. Ballouz4, and S. R. Schwartz4

1Planetary Science Institute, Tucson, AZ, USA (, 2Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History, Washington, DC, USA, 3unaffiliated, 4Lunar and Planetary Laboratory, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ, USA.


Birds and bird-like creatures have played an important role in human culture dating back to our early history. While many interpretations of the nature and overall birdness of such creatures are presented in myth and legend, recent events within the planetary science community have highlighted the need to better define for our modern day what exactly constitutes a “bird-like creature.” In this work, we present a methodology to quantify a creature’s total birdularity and demonstrate how it may be used to understand the mytho-avian population. We also present a more simplified method of assessing a creature’s bird-like qualities, through comparison to Molaro’s Birdness Scale. Our results suggest that any creature with a total birdularity of 0.5, or equivalent Molaro’s Birdness ranking of 6, may be appropriately considered a “bird-like creature.” We hope this work will pave the way for more clear communication within the scientific community, and for future work on the nature of birds and bird-like creatures.


Cockatrice copy