Birds don’t age like we do ….
As humans, we’re accustomed to using visual hints to guess the age of someone.
The neighbor’s dog with flecks of gray fur and a stiff walk is obviously getting up in years.
That huge gnarled tree in the park must have been there for decades.
But Birds are different. They don’t get gray ,they don’t get bigger with each passing year, they don’t leave growth rings for us to count.
In fact, once most birds develop their adult plumage, they essentially become impossible to age.
The reality that birds don’t show physical signs of aging creates a challenge for understanding how long they live.
Many birds live much longer than we might expect. Some expects say that birds can live up to 120 years and more..
Here are some characteristics that can help us to guess which species are likely to be longer-lived:
- Number of chicks: Birds with longer lifespans often have fewer young, while those with shorter lifespans tend to have more.
- Years to reach adulthood: Shorter-lived species tend to reach adulthood more quickly than longer-lived species.
- Life on the ground: Birds that live in the nest on the ground have often adapted for shorter lifespans than those that live higher up, such as in the shelter of the tree canopy.