Flight Patterns Of Migrating Birds

Migratory swifts and hummingbirds fly great distances, often without stopping until they reach winter homes where there is more food. In the wild, swifts may travel at a speed of more than 100 miles (160 kilometers) per hour. The smaller hummingbirds timed in laboratories flew at speeds ranging from 30 to 53 miles (48 to 85 kilometers) per hour.

Swifts alternate between wing movement and gliding, allowing the wind to assist in moving them along. Hummingbirds can stop in mid-air by flapping their wings up and down, allowing them to hover and feed.

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