Encyclopedia Britannica Illustrated Science Library 2009 – birds

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Encyclopedia Britannica
Illustrated Science Library 2009 – birds
Edition 2009
pages 56

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Encyclopedia Britannica Illustrated
Science Library 2009 – birds

 Welcome to the world of birds. No matter how you approach it, this
,is a wonderful book not only for its pictures, splendid illustrations, size
and format but also because, as you read it, you will discover secrets about these
,inhabitants of the Earth, which according to the history of evolution,
came into being before humans. The text is written in a direct, easy-to-understand
style. Most birds have a much-envied ability that has inspired poems and all
,types of experiments: they can fly. This enables them to see the Earth from afar
,with its seas, mountains, rivers, cities and other features. It has been estimated
that more than 200 million birds migrate each year, all over the planet. Many of
them fly thousands of miles, crossing desolate deserts and windy seas to arrive
in Africa or Antarctica. Some find their way using the sun, the moon, and the
stars; others follow their parents or use the course of rivers or mountain chains as
references. In general, smaller birds migrating across continents stop several
times to get food. It is surprising how fast they travel, in spite of these stops: it has
been calculated that some small species cover almost 2,500 miles (4,000 km) in
five or six days. Several studies have shown that carrier pigeons and white headed
.sparrows, for example, can travel more than 600 miles (1,000 km) per day
Some ducks, such as the blue-winged teal, complete their trip from Canada to
.central Mexico in about 35 days, making several stops to feed along the way