January 5th 2012 marks the 10th anniversary of National Bird Day! Organized by Born Free USA it promotes the idea that “non-domesticated animals that belong in the wild, where they can fly free and express their natural behaviors”. Also, birds should not be sold in pet stores; instead we should appreciate those that fly free outside our windows, and discourage captive bird trade. Click here to see how you can get involved!
To celebrate National Bird Day, here are some fun facts about birds:
The Anna’s Hummingbird is considered the fastest animal on Earth. Its courtship dive is faster than a fighter jet a full throttle. It’s swoop experiences forces 10 times the pull of gravity!
Based on similarities in skeletal structure, a good number of scientists have theorized that many modern bird species evolved from the dinosaurs.
Migratory birds (ex. geese) fly in a V-shaped formation to optimize aerodynamics and conserve energy – those in the front ‘break up’ the air along their wing tips, which both decreases air resistance for those behind and creates a sort of vortex behind the group, pushing the whole formation forward.
Some birds cannot fly. For example, the ostrich, penguin, emu, cassowary, rhea, and kiwi.
The ostrich is the world’s largest (living bird). Adult males can be up to 8 feet tall and weigh between 140 to 230 pounds! Since it is also flightless, it depends on running to escape predators. Beware, they also pack a powerful kick!