The blackpoll warbler accomplishes a mighty big feat for such a little bird.
Scientists have documented how Setophaga striata, which weighs just 12 grams, completes an arduous nonstop flight over the Atlantic Ocean from New England and eastern Canada to the Caribbean islands as it migrates each autumn toward its South American wintering grounds.
By placing miniature backpacks with geolocators on the birds, the researchers determined they flew an average of nearly 2540 kilometres over two to three days.
“No other bird this size migrates for this long in one go. It is truly one of the most amazing migratory feats ever recorded,” says ecologist Ryan Norris of the University of Guelph in Ontario.