Aquatic Sports and Adventures Logo

Long Distance Migrations

by Terry Sovil

Migrations. There are all kinds of animals and insects that migrate. But how far do they really go?

Who could ever imagine an insect that flies 2,500 to 3,000 miles / 4,000 to 4,800 km? Well there is one. The MONARCH BUTTERFLY migrates from the central United States and Canada to Central, Pacific Mexico. This is quite a long trip when you consider that it flies about 6 feet / 1.8 m per second.
Monarch Butterfly

Do mammals migrate? Well, yes, they do. We tend to call them "snowbirds". They spend the summers in their native area and then when it starts to turn cold they migrate south. But the longest migration for a mammal is the HUMPBACK WHALE. Their migration can run the Antarctic Peninsula to Columbia. This is a distance of 5,313 miles / 8,500km. The record holder is a lone female humpback that traveled 6,125 miles / 9,800km from breeding grounds in Brazil to Madagascar.
humpback whale illustration

Everyone know that birds migrate. If you have them leaving your area for the winter you see them grouping up and then they fly away. Some, like geese, in formation. The Arctic Tern, which may fly 44,000 miles / 70,400km per year for birds nesting in Iceland and Greenland, and 56,000 miles 90,000km for birds nesting in the Netherlands. Scientists think they make a few stops along the way. These are by far the longest migrations known in the animal kingdom.
Arctic Tern

Finally, the majestic reptile winner for migration is LEATHERBACK turtle. They travel 10,000 miles / 16,000km or more each year as they swim across the entire Pacific Ocean from Asia to the coasts of Washington, Oregon and California in search of jellyfish. One rugged turtle traveled 12,774 mies / 20,483km across the Pacific from Papua, Indonesia, to the coast of Oregon and partway back. The tracking device gave up before the turtle did. The fact that they eat jellyfish makes this 1,000 pound / 454km makes this guy susceptible to our plastic waste. A floating bag from your favorite convenience store floating in the sea is the ocean’s most deadly predator. To eat their jellyfish, they have a mouth that would probably surprise you. See the last photo below. It is like something from a alien horror movie. But it catchs jellyfish!
Leatherback Turtle
Leatherback Turtle with People for perspective
Leatherback turtle mouth

Aquatic Sports and Adventures
Address: Privada Los Naranjos #30, Santiago, Manzanillo, Colima, Mexico  28860
Phone in the USA direct to the shop in MX: 909-266-0271
Phone Internationally to MX: 011-52-314-334-6394
Phone from MX: 314-334-6394
Contact Aquatic Sports and Adventures

Scuba Diving in Manzanillo   Scuba Training Classes and Certification   Dive Sites Around Manzanillo Mexico
Aquatic Life Around Manzanillo Mexico   About Aquatic Sports and Adventures   Articles Written by our Staff
Contact Aquatic Sports and Adventures   Information About Manzanillo Mexico   Getting to Manzanillo Mexico