Young Bird May Have Set Non-Stop Distance Record By Flying From Alaska To Australia

CANBERRA, Australia (AP) A younger bar-tailed godwit seems to have set a continuous distance file for migratory birds by flying at the very least 13,560 kilometers (8,435 miles) from Alaska to the Australian state of Tasmania, a hen skilled stated Friday.

The hen was tagged as a hatchling in Alaska through the Northern Hemisphere summer season with a monitoring GPS chip and tiny photo voltaic panel that enabled a world analysis staff to comply with its first annual migration throughout the Pacific Ocean, Birdlife Tasmania convenor Eric Woehler stated. Because the hen was so younger, its gender wasnt recognized.

Aged about 5 months, it left southwest Alaska on the Yuko-Kuskokwim Delta on Oct. 13 and touched down 11 days later at Ansons Bay on the island of Tasmanias northeastern tip on Oct. 24, based on knowledge from Germanys Max Plank Institute for Ornithology. The analysis has but to be revealed or peer reviewed.

The hen began on a southwestern course towards Japan then turned southeast over Alaskas Aleutian Islands, a map revealed by New Zealands Pukoro Miranda Shorebird Center reveals.

The hen was once more monitoring southwest when it flew over or close to Kiribati and New Caledonia, then previous the Australian mainland earlier than turning immediately west for Tasmania, Australias most southerly state. The satellite tv for pc path confirmed it coated 13,560 kilometers (8,435 miles) with out stopping.

Whether that is an accident, whether or not this hen received misplaced or whether or not that is a part of a standard sample of migration for the species, we nonetheless dont know, stated Woehler, who’s a part of the analysis challenge.

Guinness World Records lists the longest recorded migration by a hen with out stopping for meals or relaxation as 12,200 km (7,580 miles) by a satellite-tagged male bar-tailed godwit flying from Alaska to New Zealand.

That flight was recorded in 2020 as a part of the identical decade-old analysis challenge, which additionally entails Chinas Fudan University, New Zealands Massey University and the Global Flyway Network.

The identical hen broke its personal file with a 13,000-kilometer (8,100-mile) flight on its subsequent migration final yr, researchers say. But Guinness has but to acknowledge that feat.

Woehler stated researchers didn’t know whether or not the most recent hen, recognized by its satellite tv for pc tag 234684, flew alone or as a part of a flock.

There are so few birds which were tagged, we dont know the way consultant or in any other case this occasion is, Woehler stated.

It could also be that half the birds that do the migration from Alaska come to Tasmania immediately relatively than by means of New Zealand or it could be 1%, or it could be that that is the primary its ever occurred, he added.

Adult birds depart Alaska sooner than juveniles, so the tagged hen was unlikely to have adopted extra skilled vacationers south, Woehler stated.

Woehler hopes to see the hen as soon as moist climate clears within the distant nook of Tasmania, the place it’ll fatten up having misplaced half its physique weight on its journey.


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