Alpine birds fly 200 days non-stop?

Bird researchers in Switzerland have gathered what they say is the first unequivocal evidence of birds flying non-stop for as long as 200 days. They feed on “aerial plankton” — airborne insects — and even sleep in flight.

The research team captured six Alpine swifts ( Tachymarptis melba ) in 2011 and fitted them with tiny electronic monitoring devices before they migrated more than 3,000 kilometres to their wintering grounds in Africa. The devices tracked the birds’ location and measured changes in body position and movement every four minutes.

When the birds returned in the spring to their breeding grounds in Switzerland, the team recaptured three of them and downloaded the data from the devices.

The data indicated that the birds had been in the air continuously for nearly seven months, either flapping their wings or gliding, although the researchers said they may have landed briefly in gaps between measurements.

They greatly increased their gliding at night and were apparently on the wing the entire time they were wintering south of the Sahara, too.

The researchers said the findings were not surprising because ornithologists had claimed for long that some swifts might stay airborne for almost their whole lifetime.

Most birds rest on land or water after hunting or a long migration since flying requires a considerable amount of energy for locomotive control: The birds must constantly adapt their position to airflow.

Up to now, only marine animals such as dolphins had been known to be capable of such long-term locomotion (they sleep by resting one half of their brain at a time).

“Our data imply that all vital physiological processes, including sleep, can be perpetuated during flight,” the researchers wrote.DPA




About local2globe

Faculty of soft skills, personality development and Humanities. | Hang Time Blog

The official news blog of with commentary and analysis from's staff of writers.


A planet that doesn’t burn, a future that doesn’t suck


Startup and Technology News

The Meat & Potatoes of Life

By Lisa Smith Molinari

Attila Ovari

Loving Life and Inspiring Others

Hiking Photography

Beautiful photos of hiking and other outdoor adventures.

Fueled by Chocolate

Mostly Mildly Amusing Missives

On The Heath

where would-be writer works with words


Observations of life in France. By an adopted Française.

Cunning Hired Knaves

a jelly-like mass of liquid corruption


food and other morsels...

typical guy, atypical situation

a solid soul trapped inside a broken body

Cenaclul ROMANTICII (Migdale Marius)

Prolog: Poate că Iubirea nu face Pământul să se învârtă... Dar face ca scurta noastră călătorie prin viaţă să merite!

Life Is Like That

Man is only a pilgrim on Earth

C.B. Wentworth

Just following my muse . . .


creativity, news, reblogging, fun...:-)

Lyrical Anarchy

Poetic Justice!


I write about TV and movies. Also sometimes other stuff too.


finding new homes for old goodies

Memoirs of a Dragon

Dragon Thoughts and Quantum Musings

Book Hunger

Good Books and Inspirational Writing

Discovering Different

Like a Fortune Cookie... Without Calories

The Boston Harbor Picayune

The Boston Artists' Life on a Dime -An Online Newspaper

Suzy Blue

the blog


watercolour, drawings, art and paintings

Unconfirmed Bachelorette

Proudly living alone with cats

Good Time Stories

Inspiring and Heartwarming Stories


Fiction & invention are the fabric of life

The Punchy Lands!

Embrace Your PUNCHY Nature

CBS Las Vegas

News/Talk 840 AM KXNT

The Scene Stealer

Taking shots at life

The accidental Blog..

Thoughts... Whatever, whenever!


Sharing and expressing... through words.


life without erasers


The way I see it...

Mustard Seed Budget



Notes from the coast

Be Inspired! ...and Get ArtQuenched!

Quench Your Creative Thirst

Guitarist India

Kapil Srivastava - One of the Best Guitar Players & Top Authors

Word Wabbit

Wrestless Word Wrestler


Just another site

%d bloggers like this: