The World is filled with a lot of fascinating creatures. All of them wander around with no strings attached to them. We are accompanied by a lot of living things that have their very own unique features. We can classify these companions of ours into five major groups. Namely Mammals, Reptiles, Fishes, Birds, and Amphibians. Each class of these living things has its unique characteristics which widely differentiate them from the others.
Starting from the Bird class, these are the living things that have seen a lot of changes over time. They have this unique ability to fly, making them the most efficient in escaping and surviving the wilderness and even other catastrophes. They have different classifications in themselves. Some can fly and some can’t. Some are pure herbivores, whereas some are omnivores at the same time. They vary a lot in terms of sizes also. It was once an interesting quest to find the largest bird in the world.
Birds are a gift from nature to us. It is because they have helped us with a lot of things during the origin times of land, which didn’t even have any vegetation. We have a lot to cover in this article. Let us get to know more about the other four after looking at the largest birds in the world here.
1) Finding the Largest Bird in the World
I’m can assure you that you will gain at least the minimum knowledge required to get some insights about a bird when you look at one after going through this whole article. This makes bird watching a whole lot entertaining. Let us look at the top-most birds in the world which are famous for being large now.
1.1) The Harpy Eagle
Harpy Eagle, also known as the Harpia Harpyja is the prime bird that is mostly referenced in a lot of Greek mythology. It belongs to some of the biggest and most intelligent birds to have ever existed in this world. An average Harpy Eagle can weigh up to six to nine kilograms which could vary from the food consumption and the hunt-break intervals. These birds are some of the closest neighbors to that the iconic Bald Eagle which has been referenced for bravery and patriotism for centuries now.
The Harpy Eagle is mostly found in the regions of South America. They have a wingspan that is 5 feet long. They have extremely sharp nails which could tear right through your skin. When approaching a prey, the bird is said to descend from the sky at speed of seventy Kilometers per hour to finish the target in one move.
1.2) The Ostrich
Ostrich which is scientifically known as the Struthio Camelus is considered to be the largest bird in the world currently. The ostrich belongs to the list of flightless birds though. These birds grow up to nine feet which is a lot taller than an average NBA player. Ostriches are known to lay the largest eggs in the world in existence. They have a wingspan that is nearly 2 and a half meters wide. They are flightless birds but still use their wings efficiently. They use their wings to steer away from the dangers of nature.
Ostriches also use their wings to brake their tremendous speed of about Seventy Kilometers per hour on land. They use their sharp beaks to hunt down their threats if they see an opportunity. Most of the ostriches are found in the Savannahs of Africa. They are also known as one of the most dangerous birds in the world when it comes to protecting their young ones.
1.3) The Cassowary
Cassowary, also known as the Casuarius is the closest cousin of the Ostrich. But unlike its cousin Cassowaries are beautifully colored all over their body. Their looks might be found wonderful and terrifying by others at the same time. They have this certain look that associates them with their ancestors in the Jurassic Era. Cassowaries can grow up to 6 feet from the ground. These birds have a unique thing on their beak. It is called the Casque, which is used to clear out anything which is on its way.
The Casque is formed by pure keratin substance which is the literal material of our nails and hair. This acts like a path clearer for the Cassowaries. These birds are considered to be far more dangerous than the other birds on the list. It is because the bird has been recorded to have killed humans before. It murders its prey with its sharp claw-like toe which is also used for defense. Cassowaries can be found in the lands of Australia and New Guinea.
1.4) The Wandering Albatross
Its wingspan is just Wow! I’m talking about the wandering albatross which has a scientific name known as the Deomedea Exulans. It is known to be one of the biggest flying birds in existence. It has a literal wingspan of about three and a half meters, making it the largest flying bird on the planet. This large wingspan of the Albatross will enable them to travel a lot longer than the other birds on this list.
Albatross is known to have been associated with some popular sea journeys. A lot of ocean voyagers have come across a lot of Albatrosses in the middle of the ocean. Well, the ocean just doesn’t provide any area for the bird to rest. And albatrosses are the only birds that could be found in the middle of the ocean. This just means that Albatrosses are gifted with a lot of endurance, power, and stamina.
Albatrosses can be found in places that are quite unexpected. They can be found in the middle of any ocean in the world. They are even known to have developed habitats in Antarctica. One of the famous species of this kind is the Southern royal albatross.
1.5) The Andean Condor
Also known as the Vultur Gryphus, the Andean condor stands as the bird to have the second largest wingspan, next to that of the Albatross’. These birds are said to be one of the highest flying birds in the world with a record of about six thousand feet above the normal land terrain. With the help of their large wingspan and their tremendous energy, these birds can quickly propel from normal flying heights to giant heights within a single minute.
Their scientific name indirectly tells us that this bird is associated with the breed of Vultures, who is very popular for their character of scavenging instead of hunting. So, just like vultures, the condors tend to scavenge. The bird is also known to have a very long lifespan of about 50 years freely in the wild and about 80 years when taken into captivity. These birds are widely found in the regions of Venezuela and Colombia. Now, let us look at the wider aspect of Animal life without any further delay.
2) The Animal Kingdom
We are starting from the basic level of Biology here. The world is a large place and it has a lot of life forms. There are tons and tons of identified and unidentified life forms in the world. It was quite difficult to identify them one by one. This issue made us group them separately. Animals were classified with the help of the features they possessed. They were majorly divided into five forms of life. Let us take a look at them one by one.
Mammals are known to populate and comprise most of the animal kingdom. They are the dominating lifeforms among the animal group. Mammals are usually vertebrae in nature. That is they are living things that have a limb system just like us, humans. They have the backbone to support and facilitate their posture and movement. In addition, these mammals are widely classified into lot groups by their eating behavior. They are either carnivores or herbivores or omnivores in nature.
Mammals tend to reproduce and produce their offspring just like how normal humans give birth to their offspring. Some of the famous Mammals include Elephants, Lions, and even your regular pet dog.
One of the most interesting life forms in this list, the reptiles are usually classified as the most different class of life to ever exist. Some of the reptiles like crocodiles have their origin dating back to the age of Dinosaurs, when humans didn’t even exist! Reptiles are quite different from mammals in the case of producing their offspring.
Unlike mammals, reptiles lay eggs which have their young ones in development in them. The egg is sheltered by the parent reptile and is hatched only after some time. One of the important characteristics of reptiles is they tend to survive in a lot of situations. Most of them are slender and adaptable. They are even poisonous, some venomous. These are used to defend themselves in situations. Some of the famous reptiles include Snakes, Lizards, and Alligators.
Almost seventy percent of the world is filled with water. This tells us that most of the region in this world is covered with oceans and water bodies. The only life form which could survive underwater is the Fish life form. They have a certain Gill system to support their breathing underwater. Fishes have been the rulers of the oceans for thousands of centuries. The world contains a very large number of oceans.
Fishes and other specific lifeform are the only groups that can live in the oceans. But they can’t survive on land. It is because gills are designed only to breathe underwater and not on land. The reproductive system of Fishes differs from species to species though.
We have known a lot of Fish groups to date. But it is quite sure that there are a lot of other unrecognized life forms under water, which are left undiscovered due to the lack of technology to find them. Some of the major fish groups include Hagfishes and Lampreys.
Amphibians are that particular life form which has the ability to survive both under water and on land. They have a mixed character of the Mammals and the fish life forms. They have this unique ability to choose their condition of stay. They can decide whether they have to live in water or on land to survive. They have mixed qualities of Mammals and Fishes when it comes to the source of breathing.
In addition to this, their appearance them a look which is often confused with a lot of reptiles. They own a lot of habitats due to their ability to survive underwater and on land. They don’t pose a threat to other life forms. It is because they don’t have that physical capacity to become a predator by nature which is true in case of the lion and the tiger.
Amphibians have that particular mixed character of mammals and reptiles during reproduction. Some of them give birth to their young ones while most of the other lays and shelter their eggs. One of the most famous example of Amphibians are frogs and salamanders.
And finally, the star class of the whole life groups, the Birds are quite fascinating to study. Other life forms have their very own defense and facilitating mechanisms. Such features of the Birds are considered to be one of the most strongest ones available. They have this ability to fly, which makes them the literal kings of land.
They can either identify and target the weakest prey available or even get an early warning of a danger which is going to occur. They can attack or escape, both in advance. This ability of theirs is accompanied by other allying features like sharp vision and stamina to fly longer. Well, not all birds can fly though. Their natural design restricts them so, but they are gifted with other gifts to nullify the absence of the flight ability.
Some of the flightless birds have the toughest legs to run fast, just like the wind. The reproduction process is quite similar to that of the reptiles where they tend to lay eggs and shelter them till the time comes. Some of the famous examples of the bird class are Eagles and Vultures.
These are the prime life classifications in the Animal Kingdom. Every single one of the species presented here have their very own features and characteristics. They have seen a lot of disasters through the course of time. Each of them have a purpose to fulfill in this natural life cycle. They have also seen evolvements to face the upcoming threats as well. They have literally been upgraded from one phase to another. Now, let us look at the history of our star class, ‘Birds’ here. We will also look at the purpose of birds in our environment.
3) History of Birds
Birds are considered to be the modern Vertebrates of the world. Unlike the creatures of the sea, most of the life forms belonging to the Birds group have been recognized and recorded by mankind. The start of this fascinating life form dates back to the earliest the Jurassic era.
Remember seeing the flying dinosaurs in the Jurassic films by Steven Speilberg? Those were the world’s first flying creatures to ever exist. They are known as the Theropod Dinosaurs which had every single creature under their supervision for a million years. They were the only creatures in that era that had the ability to fly. This unique ability gave them a lot of advantages in the dangerous wild. Their body weight was very low and they had tremendous power to row their toughly feathered wings up and down to give them the ability to fly.
They saw a lot of development through the course of time and were even considered to be the foes of other apex predators like the Tyrannosaurus to hunt together. But the life class met an end during its extinction in the Jurassic period.
The meteor destroyed a whole lot of species except for the ultra micro organisms was destroyed during the calamity, leaving everything to mere dust. But fortunately, this wonderful organism and its cycle didn’t end. It came back, but in a much less-threatening way. Hundreds of years passed on for the earth to get a grip of its vegetation and life forms.
All life forms which you are witnessing currently started to grow in a raw manner during that period. It was also a period that gave birth to the new flying life form called the Avian Crown Group, which consisted of some of the most famous birds in the world. All the modern birds you see today belong to that particular group. This is how this fascinating life class of flight was born and evolved through the course of time. Let us look at its purpose and actions next.
3) What was its Purpose?
Every living organism in the world has a purpose. By purpose here, we are trying to showcase what it had contributed to this world during its existence. So the list of contributions made by birds is quite large in number. Birds were the only class of animal which had the feature to fly and travel. This enabled them a very wider area of access. They had a lot to explore through its gifted ability to fly. They were exposed to tons and tons of things out there. And surely, they would’ve done something to contribute the formation of today’s world. Some of their actions include:
4.1) Provides Insect and Rodent Control
Birds prove to be literal life saviors to most of the farmers out there. Ask a farmer and he will tell you tons of benefits they get from birds which pass by their fields. Insects and rodents are the primary threat to the precious crops grown by farmers. A lot of crops and food grains of all kinds are openly prone to bugs and insects even after heavy usage of pesticides and other chemical eliminators. In addition to this, Rodents like rats pose to be another additional threat to the crops and food grains. Birds are the only ones who pick on these insects and rodents. Birds hunt these things for their meal, thus reducing the threats farmers face.
4.2) Plant Pollination
Birds are one of the main factors which aid the whole process of pollination. Pollination is the reproductive process done by plants. The end result of pollination is the creation of plant seeds. Pollination happens when the reproductive elements of a flower reach another flower of the corresponding feature. Just like a male and a female in humankind. Birds are natural seekers of nectars which are available within the flowers. The pollen grains present in the male flower gets placed on the beak of the bird which visits it to get nectar. The seed is then transferred to the female flower when the bird goes in search of nectar again. This ultimately helps the process of pollination.
4.3) Seed Dispersal
Lastly, birds help in the process of dispersing seeds to a lot of areas. As said before, the ability of flight has made birds one of the most efficient life forms to ever exist. Birds have a wider range of access due to their gifted power. Coming to the process of Seed Dispersal, Seeds are stuck to the beaks of the birds. When they travel from one place to another, chances are, these seeds might end up landing on plain fertile terrain but with no or less vegetation. These seeds will later grow into healthy plants making the whole area green and fertile.
These are some of the contributions made by the birds which has helped mankind for a lot of years now. This is why birds are looked at a lot differently than the other classes of life forms out there. Now let us jump to the main content and discuss about the quest of finding the largest bird in the world.
These are some of the world’s largest birds in existence. Ostrich is the largest bird on this list, making it the biggest in the whole world. There are a lot of facts which make the Bird class a lot more interesting than the other ones. Feel free to check out some of the content related to birds presented to you by Icytales.