Which Bird Migrates the Longest Distance? The champion long-distance travelersof the birdworld are the Arctic terns. Arctic terns are medium-sized seabirds.
These long-winged birds breed on the far northern islands of the Arctic Ocean. Late in August, the terns leave their neststo begin a long journey to the opposite end of the world-the Antarctica. Here the waters are full of fishesthat the terns eat.
Later, the terns again fly north, arriving at their nesting places about mid-June. Then the ice leaves the Arctic waters and fishes again become more plentiful. The round trip may total 44,100 miles (70,900 kilometers).
However the Sooty Shearwater is now the undisputed holder of the record of having the longest migrationof any animal on Earth after being tracked using electronic tracking technology.
Arctic terns are too small to outfit with current electronic tags, so the true distance they cover remains relatively unknown. Now you know which bird migratesthe longest distance.
How do birds know when to migrate? Most often it is the length of daytime and temperature that makes birds aware that it is time to migrate. During winter as the temperature drops, they start flying to warmer places.
Content for this question contributed by J.R. Windham, resident of Pendleton, Umatilla County, Oregon, USA