A Great Trip Needs An Extraordinary Destination ...Hallo Bay? ABSOLUTELY

Friday, April 11, 2014

Fun Bird Facts

  1. Not all birds have equally hollow bones. Those that dive into water—like gannets, terns, and kingfishers—and those that fly very fast, like swifts, have less air in their long bones than other birds.
  2. What keeps a bird up in the air is the shape of its wings.The first humans to discover how birds stay aloft were Australian Aborigines when they invented the boomerang.
  3. The linear flight formations of migratory birds are called echelons, with the most common shapes being the “V” or the “J.” In fact, a true V-shaped formation is less common than a J formation. Birds fly in formation a) because it saves energy and b) to facilitate orientation and communication among the birds.
  4. An albatross can soar for as long as six hours without moving its wings.
  5. The heaviest bird in the air is the Kori Bustard, from East and South Africa. It weighs about 31 lb. (14 kg.), with the largest on recorded being 40 lb. (18 kg.). Because it is such hard work to fly, it flies only in emergencies and for only short distances.
  6.  A Ruby-throated Hummingbird, which weighs less than 0.2 oz., has to beat its wings more than 52 times a second to hover in front of a flower.
  7. The smallest bird in the world is the Bee Hummingbird of Cuba. It is just over 2 in. (5.7 cm.) long, which is not much bigger than a bumblebee.
  8. The fastest level flight by a bird has been seen in both the Spine-tailed Swift and the Red-breasted Merganser (a duck). They have flown at 100 mph (161 kph) in level flight.
  9. The slowest flying bird is the American Woodcock. It can fly at just 5 mph (8 kph). When hummingbirds hover, they move at 0 mph. Additionally, hummingbirds are the only birds that can fly backwards under power, registering a negative speed.
  10. The Rufous hummingbird is the smallest migrant bird. It is less than 4 in. (9 cm) long and flies every year from Alaska to Mexico, a round trip of 3,800 miles (6,400 km).

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