The effects of passive wing flapping on respiratory pattern were examined in decerebrate Canada geese. The birds were suspended dorsally with two spine clamps while the extended wings were continuously moved up and down with a device designed to reproduce actual wing flapping. Passive wing motion entrained respiration over limited ranges by both increasing and decreasing the respiratory period relative to rest. All ratios of wingbeat frequency to respiratory frequency seen during free flight (Soc. Neurosci. Abstr. 15: 391, 1989) were produced during passive wing flapping. In addition, the phase relationship between wingbeat frequency and respiratory frequency, inspiration starting near the peak of wing upstroke, was similar to that seen during free flight and was unaffected by perturbations of the wing-flapping cycle. Removal of all afferent activity from the wings did not affect the ability of continuous passive wing movement to entrain respiration. However, feedback from the wings was required to produce rapid within-breath shifts in the respiratory period in response to single wing flaps. In conclusion, although feedback from the chest wall/lung may be more important in producing entrainment during the stable conditions of passive wing flapping, wing-related feedback may be critically involved in mediating the rapid adjustments in respiratory pattern required to maintain coordination between wing and respiratory movements during free flight.