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9 birds that set records for their amazing flights

By: Jaymi Heimbuch on June 5, 2014, 11:24 a.m.
bar-tailed godwit

Photo: Wayne Butterworth/flickr

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Longest non-stop flight: Bar-tailed godwit

Great snipes get to their migration destination in record time, and Arctic terns have the longest migration but with pit-stops. What bird has made the longest non-stop migration flight? That record goes to the bar-tailed godwit. One bird satellite tagged by researchers flew a staggering 7,145 miles from Alaska to New Zealand in nine days, never stopping for food, water or rest. That's partly because it couldn't; the journey was straight over the Pacific Ocean without possibility of any of these things for this kind of bird. Some bar-tailed godwits make a stop on the East Asian coast, however as habitat there dwindles due to human encroachment, there's been a dramatic drop in the number of these extraordinary birds making it to New Zealand each year.