A gender-bending Scottish bird migrated 16,000 miles, breaking the record for longest European bird migration, according to the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds(RSPB).
The epic round-trip journey, undertaken by a red-necked phalarope, took the well-traveled bird across two oceans. The bird flew from the island of Fetlar in Shetland, Scotland, across the Atlantic, south down the eastern seaboard of the United States, across the Caribbean, and Mexico, ending up off the coast of Peru. After wintering in the Pacific, it returned to Fetlar following a similar route.
It's not the longest bird migration ever, as this list shows, but the feat is still a record-breaker for Europe.
PHOTOS: Birds Take Flight for Fall Migration
Scientists from the RSPB tracked the red-necked phalarope's travels using a geolocator device that weighs less than a paperclip. Ten of the birds were outfitted with the device while on the Scottish isle.
The researchers couldn't believe how long and far the birds traveled. The scientists conducted the study just trying to figure out where the birds spent the winter. Little did they know that these were world-class fliers.