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Swifts fly 3,000 miles in five days

swift apus apus

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#1    Still Waters

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Posted 17 June 2012 - 10:33 AM


A Common Swift (Apus apus) has been recorded covering more than 3,100 miles in just five days during its migration from Africa back to the UK.

The bird was able to maintain an average speed of around 25mph for the non-stop journey across the Sahara desert and up through Europe to its nest site at a nature reserve in Fowlmere, in Cambridgeshire.

The creature, which is around six inches in length, with a wingspan of around 15 inches, is able to eat and sleep on the wing. Before setting off, it spent around ten days in Liberia, west Africa, where it fattened up for its journey by hoovering up flying termites.

The bird, named A322, was tracked as part of a project run by the British Trust for Ornithology, which is investigating reasons behind the species’ decline.


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#2    lightly


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Posted 18 June 2012 - 12:27 AM

Wow!    hence the name? :)

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#3    Chooky88



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Posted 20 June 2012 - 10:09 AM

Is that an African or European Swift? Also, how far can they travel if two are using a strand of creeper under the dorsal guiding feathers to carry a coconut?

#4    pallidin


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Posted 20 June 2012 - 02:59 PM

How I wish I had wings and could fly.
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#5    Zoric


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Posted 20 June 2012 - 05:17 PM

Perhaps the birds should be sponsored by Red Bull !

#6    csspwns


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Posted 21 June 2012 - 04:39 AM

tats why they are called swifts lol

#7    Paracelse


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Posted 21 June 2012 - 11:08 AM

I noticed they arrived in the area I live now few days ago along with some swallows (they have a white belly that how I make the difference).  I tried to take pictures of them but no way they are really to fast for me.

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#8    ThickasaBrick


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Posted 21 June 2012 - 02:58 PM

Awesome! I love it when nature accomplishes the remarkable.

#9    Emin


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Posted 23 June 2012 - 05:17 PM

Interesting actually i was researching swifts some days ago. I'm not sure if those are the birds that i constantly see during dusk but they do have that arced wing appearance. Well it wouldn't surprise me if they flew that much because i've observed them fly and they sure fly like crazy

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