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8400 Miles Nonstop

The bar-tailed godwit caught birddom by surprise When word got out just how far this bird flies A juvenile Limosa lapponica, satellite tag 2-3-4-6-8-4 flew nonstop from Alaska to the Tasmanian shore! 13,560 kilometers nonstop, eleven days and nights A new world record for marathon bird flights "From Alaska to Tasmania? The devil, you say!" cried ravens and crows, "Every bird knows, claiming to fly 8400 miles To the Tasmanian isles— is the height of audacity! No bird has the capacity We protest with pugnacity Demanding veracity!" The godwits conveyed a very chill groove They had, after all nothing to prove having set the prior world records in '20 and '21 A controversy was brewing Would their achievements be undone? A commission was appointed for a bird's-eye review into the facts of the matter the truth to pursue Wise owls were chosen to adjudicate this claim To settle once and for all who deserved the acclaim Only item considered had scientific backing Since satellite data Allowed accurate tracking Of the tagged young bird's ultramarathon flights The facts indisputable No need for bird fights, ending investigation into this migration gyration Bar-tailed godwits awarded the Oiseau de Plume for being the farthest nonstop flying bird in the room The Arctic terns too received acclamation For flying the farthest In their migration—pole to pole, 24,000 miles each year causing most birds present to stand up and cheer in spontaneous applause— But not all birds were willing To concede their cause Displaying proclivity to resist the festivity The crows and ravens As they stormed out the door vowed in unison, wings clenched, "Nevermore!" 10/28/2022 Based on a true story with poetic license added for spice. When was the last time you flew 8400 miles nonstop? A bar-tailed godwit flew nonstop over 8400 miles from Alaska to Tasmania from October 13 through 24, 2022, setting a new world record for nonstop bird flight. Further adding to the godwit's rockstar status, the National Audubon Society website explains: "Unlike albatross or other long-flying seabirds, godwits are active flyers, not gliders—their wings are moving the whole time." That's amazing!

Copyright © | Year Posted 2022




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Date: 12/15/2022 12:51:00 PM
wow, this is sure something, Mark!!! I never even heard of this bird before, but how amazing it is!!! Fun rhymes too. Thanks for my placement in your last contest, btw.
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Mark Toney
Date: 12/16/2022 8:25:00 AM
I, too, had never heard of the bar-tailed godwit before. I appreciate your comments, Andrea, and continued support of my 2022 Poetry Marathon.
Date: 11/25/2022 8:13:00 AM
Beautiful narration of the nonstop long distance flight and the controversy brewing up among jealous birds. I am glad Godwit was finally given the due recognition by the expert committee. I love birds and everything about them ! A very absorbing narration with a pinch of humor. Much enjoyed, dear Mark.
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Mark Toney
Date: 11/25/2022 8:05:00 PM
Valsa, I appreciate your gracious review of my light verse tribute to the bar-tailed godwit's awesome achievement. I'm glad you enjoyed it!
Date: 10/30/2022 4:51:00 PM
...bird photography is a hobby of mine.... but wow....to be able to ride the winds so far must mean....there is a felt and innate pleasure within of being....as what it is.... far out.......stans sand
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Mark Toney
Date: 10/31/2022 4:12:00 AM
That’s a good point and such a cool thought, stans. What blows my mind is what the National Audubon Society article states: “Unlike albatross or other long-flying seabirds, godwits are active flyers, not gliders—their wings are moving the whole time.”
Date: 10/29/2022 1:11:00 AM
Well, this deserves so many plumes, Mark, One amazing poem, factual with spice, yes indeed, an epic journey, flew a few miles/kilometres in my time, without lifting an arm, so hail to the bird, 'Godwit' and the poet for the record of such deed..Harry
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Mark Toney
Date: 10/30/2022 7:23:00 AM
Harry, thank you for your kind encouragement, I shared your comment with my wife, and she replied “Even his comment sounds like poetry.” ;)