The wingspan (or just span) of a bird, is the distance from the left wingtip to the right wingtip. The wingspan of a bird is measured by holding the bird flat on its back and measure the distance between the tips of the longest primary feathers at the end of each wing. Here is a list of the ten largest wingspans of birds:
1. Albatross 11.8 Feet
Albatross’ are one of the largest flying birds on the earth and are known to have the longest wingspan ever recorded. The albatross (genus Diomedea) can be found in the Southern Ocean and the North Pacific.
2. White pelican 11.8 Feet
The Pelecanus onocrotalus or better known as the Eastern White Pelican can be found in the swamps and shallow lakes of Africa and southeast Europe through Asia. The White Pelican is protected by the Agreement on the Conservation of African-Eurasian Migratory Waterbirds (AEWA).
3. Andean condor 10.5 Feet
The Andean Condor (Vultur gryphus) is a species found in the Andes Mountains and neighboring Pacific coasts of western South America. It is one of the biggest flying land birds in the western hemisphere. The condor is a scavenger and feeds on carcasses of animals like dears and cattle.
4. Whooping swan 9.8 Feet
Whooping swans live in places where there are large bodies of water as their legs are too weak to support their weight for too long when they are young. Whooper swans have a loud and deep call and can fly very long distances. Whooper swans migrate hundreds of miles to northern Europe and eastern Asia.
5. Bearded vulture 9.8 Feet
The Bearded Vulture or Lammergeier breeds on the peaks of mountains in southern Europe, Africa, India, and Tibet. They only lay one or two eggs every winter which hatch during spring. Bearded Vultures are scavengers but they prefer bone marrow so they drop bones from heights to crack them open.
6. Turkey vulture 9.2 Feet
The turkey vulture’s feathers are blackish-brown and grayish-silver. The adult’s head is small in proportion to its body and is red in color with few to no feathers. Its beak is short and hooked.
7. Grey crane 8.2 Feet
The Grey Crane (Balearica regulorum). It inhabits the dry savannah in Africa south of the Sahara. The Grey crane initiates its breeding process by dancing, bowing and jumping. It makes a loud call by inflating its red gular sac.
8. Golden eagle 8.2 Feet
One of the fiercest birds of prey found in the Northern Hemisphere is the Golden Eagle (Aquila chrysaetos) is. Golden eagles eat all kinds of small mammals and have even been known to attack large deer.
9. White stork 5.9 Feet
White Storks migrate long distances by relying on movement between thermals of hot air. They annually migrate between Europe and Sub-Saharan Africa. According to mythology, the ‘stork’ brings babies to new parents. This myth probably came about because storks usually build their nests in buildings in urban areas and hence probably was associated with human environment.
10. Grey Heron 5.6 Feet
The Grey Heron (Ardea cinerea), is a wading bird of the heron family Ardeidae, indigenous all over temperate Europe and Asia and some parts of Africa. Its long bill helps in catching small animals like fishes, small insects, frogs etc.