Why do birds migrate in winter?

Well, at least for some birds, migration is a method of survival. Migration in birds is the movement of birds from colder to warmer temperatures. They often migrate in groups or flocks and colonize in certain regions.

Because of lack of shelter and food, birds need to migrate to warmer climate when the temperatures fall below normal. During the colder weather in winter, some birds migrate from the Artic to the southern areas of the globe. Some of these places include North America, South America, and Africa.

In particular, birds that live in the northern part of the United States tend to migrate to the southern states, where the warmer temperatures are more consistent. These birds such as geese, ducks, and other types of birds tend to fly in a particular manner. Experts have shown that some flocks of birds unite to fly in what’s called a flyway pathway.

This type of path allows some birds to follow a specific route during migration. It is still unknown how some birds really know what path they need to follow during migration. Some experts believe it is a learned trait or genetically inherited. It is possible that these birds that migrate also can detect the magnetic field of the earth.

These birds usually fly in unison in a V-shape format, which allows conservation of energy. These birds try to avoid large bodies of water with little foliage to protect them. They tend to fly near mountain ranges and river coastlines. For some birds, it seems thet have a built-in map or compass that lets them know where and when to fly south for the winter.

Although it is not quite clear when and why they need to migrate, it is evident that the lack of resources is the big motivator in migration. It is also an opportunity to wait for the birth of their offsprings. If they survive the trip back home and adapt to the new conditions, these new birds will ensure the legacy of the genetic pool.

And it continues with their genetic heritage that their parents passed on to them. To observe these creatures migrate, you might need lots of patience and a good pair of binoculars. But it is all worth it when you see these awesome birds in their V-shape form fly away to their destination.

Barbara Mascareno

Barbara is an educational writer, teacher, and instructional designer. She loves to write K-12 education content, teaching strategies, bilingual education approaches, and foreign language.

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