Birds Fly More Than 7,000 Miles Nonstop

Oct 22, 2008 | Birding

The bar-tailed godwit, a plump shorebird with a recurved bill, has blown the record for nonstop, muscle-powered flight right out of the sky.

A study being published today reports that godwits can fly as many as 7,242 miles without stopping in their annual fall migration from Alaska to New Zealand. The previous record, set by eastern curlews, was a 4,000-mile trip from eastern Australia to China.

The birds flew for five to nine days without rest, a few landing on South Pacific islands before resuming their trips, which were monitored by satellite in 2006 and 2007.

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