One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
An Asian spine-tailed swift, believed to be the world's fastest flying bird.
Genus Hirundapus, family Apodidae: four species
- ‘The needletails can seem drawn to the hills as if by a magnet; on good days, flocks arrive from the north, glide and circle around, then, with a few flaps of their wings, whoosh overhead like speeding bullets, and vanish to the south.’
- ‘The fastest normal wing-flapping flight ever clocked was of the white-throated needle-tailed swift in India: a reported 219 miles per hour.’
- ‘Larger species, such as white-throated needletail, are amongst the fastest flyers in the animal kingdom.’
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