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The fastest birds in the world – Top 10

The fastest birds in the world – Top 10

The question of which of the birds is the fastest in the world has always troubled humanity. Just like the question of what is the fastest mammal on land, who dominates in the water, etc.

What is the fastest bird in the world?

Most of our readers probably know the answer to this question and know that it is: peregrine falcon (Falco peregrinus). The answer to the question about the second and third place is also known to people who already learned summary fastest animals in the world. Today’s statement gives the idea of which birds occupy the next positions. Interestingly, in the statement also appears the largest bird in the world, which, although cannot flight, but reaches an impressive speed.

Before we get to the table of the birds’ speed records, a brief overview of the fastest representatives of the avian family.

The fastest birds in the world – characteristic

Golden Eagle (Aquila chrysaetos).

1. Peregrine Falcon (Falco peregrinus) – the fastest bird in the world

The fastest bird is represented by the peregrine falcon. During the dive flight, the peregrine falcon can reach a speed of up to 350 km/hour! The record speed of the falcon, which was able to measure was 389 km/h (242 mph).

Some sources claim that during the dive falcon can reach speed over 400 km/h (248 mph) …

Peregrine Falcon (Falco peregrinus) – the first place.

2. Golden Eagle (Aquila chrysaetos)

The second position was taken by Golden Eagle. Although this bird is a lot bigger than a falcon, and can not boast of its maneuverability, during a dive reaches a speed of up to 320 km/h (199 mph).

Famous are his performances during courtship, when the eagle grabs the stone from the ground, lifts it up and throws with a bow, then diving at breakneck speed, catches it on the fly, before the stone has time to touch the ground …

Golden Eagle (Aquila chrysaetos) – the second place.

6. Common Swift (Apus apus)

Swift is an amazing bird – he spends most of his life in the air. He hunts and eats in the air, in the air even sleeping … Nature so eminently adapted swift for flight, that his legs were shortened and the bird has a problem with the start of the ground. Mainly therefore swifts choose tall buildings, chimneys or vertical surfaces, from which it can easily start gliding.

 Although it might seem that it is similar to a swallow, in reality it is not. It is from her many times faster. Common Swift reaches a top speed of 170 km/h (106 mph), although some sources claim that can fly at a speed of 180 km/h (112 mph) in horizontal flight.

Common Swift (Apus apus) – the fourth place.

The fastest birds in the world – TOP 10

  1. Peregrine Falcon (Falco peregrinus) – 389 km/h (242 mph) / diving
  2. Golden Eagle (Aquila chrysaetos) – 320 km/h (199 mph) / diving
  3. Steppe eagle (Aquila nipalensis) – 300 km/h (186 mph) / diving
  4. Gyrfalcon (Falco rusticolus) – 209 km/h (130 mph) / diving
  5. Red-tailed hawk (Buteo jamaicensis) – 190 km/h (118 mph) / diving
  6. Common Swift (Apus apus) – 171 km/h (106 mph)
  7. White-throated needletail (Hirundapus caudacutus) – 170 km/h (105 mph)
  8. Eurasian Hobby (Falco subbuteo) – 160 km/ (100 mph)
  9. Frigatebird153 km/h (95 mph)
  10. Spur-winged Goose (Plectropterus gambensis) – 142 km/h (88 mph)
  11. Homing pigeon (Columba livia domestica) – 140 km/h (87 mph)
  12. Red-breasted Merganser (Mergus serrator) – 130km/h (81 mph)
  13. White-rumped Swift (Apus caffer) – 124 km/h (77 mph)
  14. Canvasback (Aythya valisineria) – 116 km/h (73 mph)
  15. Eider duck (Somateria mollissima) – 113 km/h (70 mph)
  16. Common Teal (Anas crecca) – 109 km/h (69 mph)
  17. Wandering albatross (Diomedea exulans) – 108 km/h (67 mph)
  18. Wild Duck (Anas platyrhynchos) – 105 km/h (65 mph)
  19. Northern Pintail (Anas acuta) – 105 km/h (65 mph)
  20. Mallard/wild duck (Anas platyrhynchos) – 105 km/h (65 mph)
  21. Gannet – 100 km/h (63 mph)
  22. Anna’s Hummingbird (Calypte anna) – 98 km/h (61 mph)
  23. California condor (Gymnogyps californianus) – 90 km/h (56 mph)
  24. Common Ostrich (Struthio camelus) – 72 km/h (45 mph)

Notes to the statement

At position 24 is Common Ostrich, which reaches a top speed while running 72 km/h (45 mph). We met with the source of giving that at a very short distance the bird can run at a speed of 98 km/h (61 mph). Since, however, we can not confirm this speed, we present 72 km/h (45 mph).

It should also pay attention to how many items on the list take the birds of the ducks family – Anatidae.

The fastest birds in the world – Top 10
chart speed [km/h]

Fastest birds TOP 10 - chart speed in km/h
Fastest birds TOP 10 – chart speed in km/h

The fastest birds in the world – Top 10
chart speed [mph]

Fastest birds TOP 10 - chart speed in mph
Fastest birds TOP 10 – chart speed in mph.


Dinosaur Database


  1. What about the Raven? They are said to be pretty spectacular when they’re flying; they’re seen indulging in aerobatic activities.

  2. I love the topic, but there is a conceptual problem including diving speed in direct comparison to level flight speed for birds, even if it’s labelled. At maximum dive speeds, the falcon can hardly be said to be flying at all. With the direction of travel being very near vertical , and virtually all motive force coming from gravity, it’s wings mostly retracted, and every effort and feature strained towards lowest possible drag, this motion, while admittedly stunningly fast, is basically a directed low-drag fall, utterly different from, say, the Common Swift, which can actually >>propel itself<< in level flight at 106mph! I stand in awe of both forms of motion, but would never include them in the same chart of speeds. For many birds, diving is simply not a major part of the flight repertoire.

    It's a little like saying the second fastest land animal is a cheetah, and the fastest land animal is a cheetah that fell off of a thousand foot cliff! :-).

    1. Diving is still a form of controlled flight it still uses its wings and tail feathers for precision and not to mention the amount of power it would use to slow down to accurately collect its prey coming out of a 200 mph dive then come to an Almost immediate Stop is an awesome feat to say the least

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