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Author Topic: Flight  (Read 5727 times)

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Re: Flight
« Reply #15 on: April 08, 2015, 10:12:06 pm »
How Long Can Birds Fly without Stopping?  ???

Some migratory birds can fly non-stop for very long distances. Some birds are even able to cross oceans without stopping as they migrate. The record for the longest distance flown by birds without stopping belongs to bar-tailed godwits. These birds can fly 7,000 miles (11,265 km) without stopping to rest or eat.

Champion Migrator Bar-tailed Godwit

Every autumn, the bar-tailed godwits travel non-stop from Alaska to New Zealand. Previously, the record for non-stop bird flights was believed to be about 3,100 miles (5,000 km). The discovery about the distance flown non-stop by bar-tailed godwits broke this record and is an extraordinary example of endurance in birds.

More about migratory birds:

About 40% of all birds in the world migrate.

Migratory birds experience hyperphagia before migration; they eat far more than usual and store fat to last through their journey.

Penguins can't fly, but they do migrate, by swimming.


Perhaps the most astonishing of all bird migrations
is the one recorded in 2007, by the team led by biologist Robert Gill of the USGS Alaska Science Center in Anchorage. Gill used satellite tracking to follow the migration of shorebirds called bar-tailed godwits—and most notably a female godwit simply called "E7".

Bar-tailed godwits are powered migrants—which means that, like blackpoll warblers, they must flap their wings the whole way, without the luxury of soaring or gliding. Not only this, but unlike arctic terns or sooty shearwaters, powered migrants can never stop to feed or rest at sea.

On August 30, E7 took off from the coast of Alaska and without ever stopping to rest or refuel, she landed in New Zealand nine days later.

Bar-tailed godwits time their departure to coincide with favorable weather patterns, so E7 intentionally took advantage of tailwinds.  These helpful winds, combined with her own uninterrupted wing beats, allowed her to travel at an average of 35 miles per hour.

The total distance—7,270 miles flown entirely over the immensity of the open Pacific Ocean. With stored body fat as her only fuel, this shorebird weighing less than a pound made the longest recorded nonstop flight of any bird.

Hope deferred maketh the heart sick: but when the desire cometh, it is a tree of life. Pr. 13:12


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