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10 amazing facts about migratory birds 9/17/2015 •

10 amazing facts about migratory birds

Every autumn migratory birds cover distances that may be compared to the distance from the Earth to the Moon. There is a hypothesis that during their journey birds use the geomagnetic field for navigation: they have a kind of compass in their eyes or beaks.


55⁰ - this is an angle of a V-shaped flock of big birds such as geese or cranes. Usually, a flock flies almost 71% faster than a single bird. It is much easier to fly in a flock because birds' hearts beat slower and they often hover: every bird flies in the airflow that is created by the preceding bird's wings. The leader of the flock is in the most unfavorable position. When it gets tired it goes to the end of the flock while some other bird occupies the leading position.

26 hours is the time a hummingbird can fly without any stoppage. This tiny bird has to wing about 6 million times to cover the distance from Hawaii to Alaska. To get the same amount of energy a hummingbird spends per day, a human being needs to consume 1300 hamburgers.

Storks can have 10 minutes' sleep in the air. A tired stork relocates to the center of the flock and has a short nap hovering in the airflow. During such sleep the bird's sense of hearing intensifies which helps it to orient itself and maintain altitude.

44,120 mi (71,000 km) is the distance covered annually by Arctic terns. The average lifespan of the Arctic tern is about 20 years. Some individuals can even live up to the age of 30 or 34.

20 × 44,120 mi = 882,400 mi is the distance that is covered by an Arctic tern during its whole life. Amazingly enough, this huge distance is equal to two journeys to the Moon and back!

0.9 mi (1,500 m) is the average altitude reached by the majority of migratory birds. But some species are real champions: for example, geese normally fly over the Himalayas as high as 5 mi (8,000 m) above the sea level. As a comparison, airliners usually fly at the altitude of 6.2 – 6.8 mi (10 – 11 km).

11.4 ft (3.5 m) is the wingspan of the wandering albatross. The bird got such a name because it spends most part of its life hovering in the air.

1000 beats/min - such frequency of heartbeat is typical of many birds when they are flying. While resting birds usually have a frequency of 400 beats per minute.

Semipalmated sandpipers have 58 - 90% increase in oxygen metabolism of their muscles before the migration across the Atlantic Ocean. This happens due to a special two-week diet when they feed on small sandhoppers rich in Omega-3 fatty acids. Professional sportsmen can improve their oxygen metabolism only by 38 – 70% after 7 weeks of continuous trainings.

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Your opinion matters
28 Comments
Spencer Payne
Spencer Payne
Loved it! Learned so much. Thank you.
1
Sep 17, 2015 8:32PM
Don Rhymes
Don Rhymes
Very interesting stuff!
0
Sep 17, 2015 8:56PM
Francine Brosseau
Francine Brosseau
Amazing
0
Sep 17, 2015 9:36PM
Ethan Allen Chase
Ethan Allen Chase
I think the bird compass is in their brain.
0
Sep 17, 2015 10:18PM
Helen Mallazzo
Helen Mallazzo
Thank you quiz club. That was very informative and interesting
0
Sep 17, 2015 10:57PM
Danny More
Danny More
WOW.. Cool..... Very interesting..
0
Sep 17, 2015 11:17PM
Patricia Thomas
Waoh what a lesson learned....tnx quiz club!!!
0
Sep 18, 2015 12:00AM
Patricia Bauer
Patricia Bauer
Absolutely some of the best things i've ever learned but always wanted to know about migratory birds.
0
Sep 18, 2015 1:24AM
Patricia Bauer
Patricia Bauer
No doubt Ethan. Just as with humans their brain operates their entire body & mind.
0
Sep 18, 2015 1:26AM
Bill Fultz
No details about how they score while flying? That is cool. Must be the most cool thing ever.
1
Sep 18, 2015 2:42AM
Mary John
Mary John
Birds are amazing!
0
Sep 18, 2015 3:08AM
Ajay Patel
Ajay Patel
Thank you for the knowledge!
0
Sep 18, 2015 7:31AM
Kathy Deringer
This was very informative. Thank you
0
Sep 18, 2015 10:55AM
cornballcccc
Interesting facts about migratory birds.I'm a avid bird lover.
0
Sep 18, 2015 1:21PM
Annette McConnell
Annette McConnell
I appreciate the format for stating the information. It kept me reading to the end of the article. Most of the information was new to me and I found it interesing. Thanks
1
Sep 19, 2015 11:56AM

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