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Facts about birds

Which bird flies fastest, which is smallest, which lays the largest egg, which has the greatest number of feathers, and a flock of additional amazing facts.
Published: 2/14/2012

Did you know there are about 9,600 bird species in the world, and that more than 2,000 have been recorded in North America? Each one is fascinating.

trivia_peregrine• Fastest-moving bird: Peregrine Falcon diving at 200 mph (320 km/h)

• Slowest-flying bird: American Woodcock at 5 mph (8 km/h)

• Longest-submerged bird: Emperor Penguin at 18 minutes

• Greatest weight-carrying capacity: Pallas’s Fish Eagle lifting a 13-lb (5.9-kg) carp — 160% of body weight

• Slowest wingbeat: vultures at 1/sec

trivia_barnowl • Coldest temperature endured: -80.5 degrees F (-62.5 degress C) by Snowy Owls

• Keenest sense of hearing: Barn Owl

• Smallest bird: Bee Hummingbird at 2.24 in (5.7 cm), 0.056 oz (1.6 g)

• Largest egg: Ostrich measuring 7 by 4.5 in (17.8 by 14 cm)

• Smallest clutch size: 1 egg laid every 2 years by albatrosses

trivia_hummer • Greatest wingspan: Wandering Albatross at up to 11 ft 11 in (3.63 m)

• Longest tail feathers: Crested Argus Pheasant at 5.7 ft (173 cm)

• Greatest number feathers: Tundra Swan at 25,216

• Lowest number feathers: Ruby-throated Hummingbird at 940

We found the facts about birds above in the book The Bird Almanac: A Guide to Essential Facts and Figures of the World’s Birds, by David M. Bird