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Saturday, 30 July 2011

Albatross

Samuel Coleridge’s poem The Ancient Mariner, which tells the tragedy of a sailor who deliberately shoots down one of the great birds was based on the old superstition of sailors that ill luck attended the killing of an albatross at sea.

A Laysan albatross called Wisdom was reunited in 2002 with the man who first tagged her in 1956. Having spent 40 years apart, Chandler Robbins picked her up by chance among a colony of more than 250,000 nests.  and discovered she’d also become the oldest albatross to ever give birth to a chick.

Wisdom is the oldest known wild bird. She was 62 years old (at least) when she hatched a healthy chick in the U.S. Midway Atoll National Wildlife Refuge. Wisdom has outlived several mates and raised anywhere from 30 to 35 chicks.

The Albatross can glide on an air current for several days and are believed to even sleep while in flight.It apparently dozes while cruising at 25 mph.The wandering albatross has a wingspan of around 10 feet and spends most of its life in the air, landing only to find a mate and breed.

They can cover enormous distances, flying as far as 10,000 miles in 33 days, or up to 600 miles in one day.



Albatrosses feed mainly on squid and fish.

65% of the world’s black-browed albatross bird population can be found on the Falkland Islands.

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