Apparently having absolutely nothing better to do like finding a cure for cancer or global warming, scientists have decided to invest their resources into proving how angels who heralded the birth of Jesus in nativity scenes around the world are anatomically flawed and unable to fly.

A leading biologist has compared the physiology of flighted species with the representations of spiritual and mythical creatures in art – and found the angels and fairies (Tinkerbell) that sit atop of Christmas trees did not get there under their own steam.

Prof Roger Wotton, from University College London, discovered that flight would be impossible for angels portrayed with arms and bird-like feathered wings.

“Even a cursory examination of the evidence in representational arts shows that angels and cherubs cannot take off and cannot use powered flight,” said Prof Wotton. “And even if they used gliding flight, they would need to be exposed to very high wind velocities at take off – such high winds that they would be blown away and have no need for wings.

“Interestingly, the artist Giotto showed one angel with a rigid ‘mono-wing’ which could be an adaptation for gliding flight. But if they do just glide, how are the wings folded, unfolded and held rigid?”

What’s next on Prof Roger Wotton’s agenda? Disproving the existence of Santa Claus that and that unicorns don’t poop rainbows?