Greatest Traveler

The arctic tern is the greatest bird traveler.  It migrates farther than any other bird.  The arctic tern is a graceful black and white sea bird with a forked tail and long wings.

During the summer the arctic tern nests in the arctic.  In the fall it begins a long journey to the most southern parts of the world, the Antarctic! And arctic tern’s roundtrip journey may e as long as 22,000 miles.

Birds that travel are called “migrants”, and their journeys are called “migrations.”  Scientists learn how far birds travel when they migrate through bird banding.

The birds are captured in a trap and aluminum bands are fastened around their legs.  Then they are released unharmed.

When caught again at a different place, code numbers on the bands show how far they have traveled from the place where they were banded. In this way the route of the arctic tern was discovered. – Dick Rogers

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