Bird records

Bird records

The LONGEST BIRDS are falcons. They live up to 160-170 years. Other birds are significantly inferior to falcons in life expectancy. So, a parrot in captivity can live up to 135 years. Kites, vultures and vultures live for more than a hundred years. Swans, crows, golden eagles, condors and other birds live up to a hundred years. Among poultry, the most durable one is the goose. He lives to be a hundred years old. Chickens usually live much shorter - 30 years, ducks - 40 years.

Colombia is home to the LARGEST NUMBER OF BIRD SPECIES. Of the 8,660 bird species living in the world, about 1,700 live here. Our country is home to 8 percent of the world’s bird diversity: 709 species. Of the 649 breeding species, 284 belong to the passerine order. According to scientists, there are about 100 billion birds living on the globe. The figure is, of course, impressive. For every person on our planet there are approximately 22 birds.

THE MOST NUMEROUS ORDER in the bird kingdom is the passerine. It has 5 thousand species, or 58 percent of the total species diversity of the bird kingdom. All our songbirds belong to this order. Crows, jackdaws, swallows too. Even lyrebirds and birds of paradise. You can't list them all. They inhabit all landscapes and countries of the world.

THE LARGEST AND HEAVYEST BIRD on earth is the African ostrich. Some specimens of this bird weigh 80-120 kilograms and grow up to three meters! Now it’s hard to believe, but in the past these giant birds were mercilessly exterminated because of... feathers. Even in Ancient Egypt, a symbol of justice was a sign depicting an ostrich feather. Knights and the like wore ostrich feathers on their helmets. Then the ladies liked them too. This fashion lasted for a very long time, hundreds of years. In pursuit of profit, ostriches were mercilessly destroyed; Soon they were shot at almost everyone in Egypt and throughout North Africa. Therefore, they began to be bred on farms. They multiplied quickly, and already before the First World War, about 300 thousand ostriches were kept on ostrich farms in South Africa alone. In 1910, 370 tons of ostrich feathers were exported from these farms. The fashion for ostrich feathers was interrupted by the First World War. Previously thriving farms began to be liquidated, and ostriches began to be hunted freely. They began to sew handbags and other unnecessary things from ostrich skins. Such is the sad story of these giants of the bird kingdom. Ostriches do not fly, they only run. These are very strong and hardy birds. In Africa, mail is carried on ostriches, harnessed to a two-wheeled cart. They run at a speed of 50 kilometers per hour. The male will run for half an hour without slowing down. The length of his step is 4-5 meters. And in some areas it reaches speeds of up to 70 kilometers per hour. The best horse will not be able to compete with him in the race. They have excellent hearing and extremely sharp vision. The eyes are very large: about 5 centimeters in diameter, both weigh more than the brain. Now African ostriches are preserved only in the deserts and steppes of Africa and the Arabian Peninsula. They live from 30 to 70 years.

THE HEAVIEST FLYING BIRD is the giant buzzard. The weight of adult males reaches 16.5 kilograms, and their wingspan is up to 2.5 meters.

THE SMALLEST AND MOST ORDINARY BIRDS are hummingbirds. You can meet them throughout the American continent. There are many types of hummingbirds. Scientists have counted 350 of them. Among them there are their own champions. The smallest is the pygmy hummingbird. It weighs less than 2 grams, 50 thousand times less than an ostrich. Her height is 5 centimeters. The little one is found in Cuba. The largest is a giant hummingbird, but it is also the size of a swallow. Hummingbirds have gained great fame for their bright colors. They shine like precious stones. What kind of flowers can you see! And green, etc. blue, and yellow, and red - the whole rainbow. Interestingly, the “play” of colors in hummingbirds changes depending on the angle of view and the position of the sun. On a day, a hummingbird, for example, eats twice its own weight. The heart also works hard: 1260 beats per minute! This is, for example, 36 times more than that of an elephant, and... almost 17 times more than an adult! Interestingly, the temperature of hummingbirds varies widely and is the same as the ambient temperature. Hummingbirds are very agile and mobile. Some of them are capable of flying 800 kilometers without rest! When they are calm, they fly at a speed of 50 kilometers per hour, and when they are alarmed, they fly twice as fast. And one more feature of hummingbirds. This is the only bird in the world that can fly tail first! Birds flap their wings very quickly, like insects: 20-30 beats per second in large species and up to 70-100 in small ones! This is the highest frequency of wing flaps during flight in birds. The hummingbird holds several more records in the bird kingdom. The sword-billed hummingbird has the longest beak in relative measurement. And although the length of this magnificent beak is small - “only” 8-10 centimeters, it exceeds the length of the bird’s body, including its head and neck! In absolute measurement, the longest beak, of course, is that of the pelican - 51 centimeters!

The North American condor and albatross have the BIGGEST WINGSPAN - up to 4.2 meters! In addition, the albatross holds two more records. Large albatrosses breed every year. They both incubate a single egg longer than any other bird, up to 80 days. Then the chick must be fed in the nest for another 7-9 months until it learns to fly. There are no other birds in the world with such a prolonged childhood! Albatrosses are seabirds. All their lives they wander over all seas and oceans, except the Arctic and North Atlantic. In our country there are no birds as huge as the North American condor, or as tiny as the hummingbird. The largest bird in our country and in Europe is the swan. Our smallest birds are kinglets and wrens. They do not grow more than 9-11 centimeters. The weight of kings is 5-7 grams, wrens are 8-11 grams.

The guillemot has the LOWEST WING FLAPPING FREQUENCY - only 8 beats per minute! This is 4200-6000 times less than that of hummingbirds. What a sedateness and what a huge difference between the two poles.

The HIGHEST SPEED FOR THE ANIMAL WORLD is developed by the falcon during a rapid dive towards prey - 300 kilometers per hour or more! In normal flight, the falcon's speed is much slower. Other birds are significantly inferior to the record holder. For an eagle, for example, the maximum speed is 190 kilometers per hour, the Hobby and Swift - 150, the Goose and Swan - 90, the Starling - 80, the Swallow - 74, the Rook - 65 and the Sparrow - 56 kilometers per hour.

The bearded vulture has the HIGHEST FLIGHT ALTITUDE among birds - 7500 meters! Other birds have a much smaller “working ceiling”. For the condor, for example, - 5900, swallow - 4000, goose - 3000, swan and crane - 2400 meters, some of them climb much higher.

Nestling birds have the FASTEST GROWTH RATE among vertebrates. For example, newborn gray herons and baby rabbits weigh approximately the same, 40 grams each. After forty days, the gray heron weighs 38 times more! But during this time the baby rabbit grows three times smaller than the gray heron.

THE BIGGEST DIFFERENCE in weight between females and males in the world of birds and quadrupeds is expressed in bustard birds from the crane order. The ratio of the weight of the female to the weight of the rooster ranges from 1:3 to 1:7. Even in those species of bustards (and there are 22 known species), where the rooster weighs almost 25 kilograms, the female weighs no more than 5 kilograms. Bustards live in the steppes and deserts of Asia, Europe (they even fly to Ukraine), as well as in Africa and Australia.

THE MOST FROST-RESISTANT ANIMAL IN THE WORLD is the domestic goose. He is not afraid of any frost. Here he can compete even with the polar bear, an inhabitant of the eternal ice. The goose can tolerate temperatures up to 110 degrees below zero! The polar bear can only withstand 80 degrees. Most other mammals cannot withstand temperatures below 45 degrees.

THE MOST VOLID BIRD is the so-called bell bird, living in the forests of Brazil. When the merciless heat is scorching and all living things freeze and fall silent, this small bird, the size of a thrush, sings most inspiredly. Her singing, reminiscent of the ringing of a bell, can be heard at a distance of three kilometers.

THE MOST TAILED ANIMALS ON THE EARTH are roosters of the light purple breed of chickens, bred more than 270 years ago by the Japanese peasant Rizaemon Takeichi. Now they are preserved only in the small village of Kate on the Japanese island of Shikoku. The tails of these amazing roosters reach 9 meters in length! In all other respects, they differ little from our ordinary domestic chickens.

The LARGEST NESTS IN THE BIRD KINGDOM - up to 15 meters in diameter and 5-7 meters in height - are built by megapods from the order Gallini. These rare and beautiful birds are found in Indonesia, Java, New Guinea and Australia. What makes these small birds, the size of a chicken, make such “Egyptian pyramids”? The fact is that megapods do not incubate eggs, but use the warmth of the rotting leaves of these huge garbage nests. For many years, a rooster and a hen, and very often several pairs, together raking earth, plants, fallen leaves, and humus into a heap with their feet. When the natural incubator is ready, the megapods scoop up the laid eggs and never return to them. Under the influence of the heat of rotting garbage, chicks emerge from the eggs after two months.

THE SMALLEST NESTS are in the smallest bird, the hummingbird. Their size is half the size of a walnut shell, and in some species even smaller.

THE LARGEST EGGS were apparently laid by a huge flightless extinct bird, Aepyornis, who lived on the island of Madagascar in the Indian Ocean. Some shells of these eggs found in Madagascar hold 8-9 liters (7 ostrich or 180 chicken eggs!).

The African ostrich has the LARGEST EGGS OF MODERN BIRDS. Their weight reaches from one and a half to two kilograms. One ostrich egg contains 25 chicken eggs! Ostriches nest on the ground. There are 12-15 eggs in a clutch. Their eggs are delicious, just like chicken eggs. These eggs have another valuable advantage: they do not spoil quickly. And you can store it in the refrigerator for a whole year. When dealing with ostrich eggs, you experience only one minor inconvenience: it is difficult to break the egg. Its shell is thick - up to two millimeters! At the same time, these are the smallest eggs in the bird world relative to the bird’s weight: only about 1.5 percent of the bird’s weight.

Kiwi has the LARGEST EGGS RELATIVE TO THE WEIGHT OF THE BIRD. They weigh only 450 grams, but this is already from 15 to 25 percent of the bird’s weight. There are not many of them in the clutch - only one or two. The male incubates them for 75 days.

THE SMALLEST EGGS IN ABSOLUTE DIMENSION are found in the world's smallest bird, the hummingbird. The smallest of them weigh only 2 milligrams! The eggs of other hummingbird species are slightly larger. They are white in color. There are usually always two eggs in a clutch.

TINAMU BIRDS HAVE THE MOST BEAUTIFUL EGGS. Not eggs, but a true work of art. You won’t see any kind of eggs in their nests: red, blue, green, orange, with an amazing shine, like expensive porcelain covered with glaze. It happened that people who met this amazing creation of nature for the first time mistook tinamou eggs for porcelain. A nest can contain from 4 to 18 exquisitely beautiful eggs. Their number depends on the type and number of females that visited the nest. Tinamous live in Central and South America. There are more than 40 species there.

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