By URL
By Username
By MRSS
Enter a URL of an MRSS feed
 
or

Bar-tailed godwit birds migrate non-stop from Alaska to New Zealand during the fall every year. According to researchers from the United States Geological Survey working with the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign, the birds that migrate by flying non-stop further than any other species might still be able to complete their route even when wind patterns fluctuate due to climate change. Researchers from the United States Geological Survey and the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign wanted to investigate whether a changing climate and wind patterns might affect the birds that migrate non-stop further than any other species.In March, the birds leave New Zealand for feeding grounds in China and Korea before flying across the north Pacific Ocean to Alaska for the summer. It’s the long portion of their journey from Alaska to New Zealand that is truly astonishing, averaging over 7 thousand miles. Although projections suggest that the high pressure systems and tailwinds that carry the birds across the ocean will fluctuate further north, the birds are reportedly very selective about when they take off. David Douglas, a wildlife biologist with the United States Geological Survey in Anchorage said: “They're very good at cuing in on when the conditions are just right. And so when we look at these modeled runs and the variability in the available windows, we see there are still ample opportunities for them to pick good windows of time to make this migration.” The birds need a lot of energy to make the epic flight, so they consume tremendous fat reserves beforehand, leading to questions about quality of their feeding grounds in the future.