16 Largest Flying Bird in the World

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Largest Flying Bird in the World

Largest flying bird in the World – When pondering the giant creatures on Earth, we often consider land animals or birds that cannot fly. After all, with such big bodies, it is hard to imagine how they could take to the skies.

However, the giant flying birds are undeniably colossal avian species, and their sheer magnitude is bound to leave you stuck. Let’s check out some of the largest flying birds in the world.

16 Largest Flying Bird in the World

Here is a list of the 16 largest flying bird in the world, arranged in ascending order based on their wingspan:

Trumpeter Swan

Known for their beauty, trumpeter swans stand out not only as one of the most elegant bird species but also as one of the largest flying bird in the world and among the surviving waterfowl species.

Native to North America, trumpeter swans share a close relationship with the whooper swan inhabiting Eurasia.

These magnificent birds, the trumpeter swans, boast an impressive wingspan of 8 feet, making them one of the largest winged creatures.

Among these avian species, the males stand out with their long length, reaching up to 5.51 feet.

Trumpeter Swan

Kori Bustard 

Among the largest flying bird in the world, the Kori bustard is the largest flying bird indigenous to Africa. This magnificent bird is commonly found in the Southern African regions, like Southern Angola, Botswana, Namibia, and Southwestern Zambia.

Kori bustards favour nesting in open savannas with scattered grass, hilly terrain, bushes, and shrubs.

Female kori bustards have a wingspan that varies from 5.10 feet to 7.3 feet, while their male counterparts boast a wingspan ranging from 7.7 feet to 9.0 feet.

Kori Bustard

Lappet-Faced Vulture

Lappet-faced vultures belong to the old-world vultures and are predominantly found in regions like Saudi Arabia, Oman, Sub-Saharan Africa, and Yemen.

These birds primarily inhabit semi-arid or desert areas, characterized by sparse trees and short grasses. The body length of lappet-faced vultures spans from 37 inches to 45 inches.

The Lappet-faced vultures are renowned for being the largest winged birds within their habitat.

Their wingspan ranges from 8.2 to 9.7 feet. These remarkable creatures boast considerable weight, with some reaching as much as 20.7 pounds.

Lappet-Faced Vulture

Bearded Vulture

The bearded vulture, also known as lammergeier, stands as the sole member of the genus Gypaetus.

These magnificent birds are indigenous to Europe and are found in the Alpine regions.

The bearded vulture boasts an impressive wingspan that can extend up to 9.3 feet, truly remarkable in size. Also, they are quite heavy, with some individuals reaching as much as 17.2 pounds.

Bearded Vulture

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Antipodean Albatros

As a member of the Albatross Family, the Antipodean albatross is known as one of the largest flying bird in the world.

These majestic birds predominantly inhabit countries across the Southern Pacific, like Chile and Australia.

These birds prefer breeding in regions like the Auckland Islands, Campbell Island, and Antipodes Islands.

The Antipodean albatrosses are quite significant in size, reaching up to 3.6 feet in length. Their wingspan can be as 9.8 feet.

These birds mainly inhabit the open seas but occasionally visit the land to rear their children once every two years. Interestingly, the Antipodean albatross begin breeding once they reach a minimum age of 7 years.

Antipodean Albatros

Eurasian Black Vulture

The Eurasian black vultures, also known as Cinereous Vultures, belong to the Old World Vultures. It is worth noting that despite the name similarities, they are unrelated to American Black vultures.

These majestic birds are widespread across certain regions of Asia and Southern Europe.

It is important to mention that within the European range, they are considered endangered.

These birds strongly prefer constructing nests on tall trees and cliff edges in high mountain areas. They are indeed sizable creatures with an impressive wingspan of 10 feet and a weight of approximately 21 pounds.

Eurasian Black Vulture

California Condor

As suggested by their name, these sizable birds are native to the deserts of central southern California. Nevertheless, populations can also be found in Utah, Arizona, and Mexico. These strange creatures prefer to build their nests on rocky cliffs.

The California condors are impressive birds with a wingspan of 9.5 feet and a maximum weight of 26 pounds.

In 1987, this New World Vulture faced extinction in the wild. Fortunately, with some help and reintroduction efforts, they survived and made a comeback.

California Condor

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Northern Royal Albatross

Among the largest flying bird in the world, the Northern royal albatrosses inhabit the New Zealand Territories.

These majestic creatures can be found in various habitats, like the Chatham Islands, Otago Peninsula, and Enderby Islands.

These magnificent birds generally weigh between 14 to 18 pounds and an amazing wingspan of up to 120 inches.

They closely relate to the southern royal Albatross, although the species was officially separated into different entities in 1998.

Northern Royal Albatross

Himalayan Griffon Vulture

The Himalayan griffon vultures are specialized scavengers and play a crucial role in the ecosystem by efficiently disposing of carrion.

These birds are mainly found in the high-elevation areas of the Himalayas and Tibetan Plateau and are likely among the region’s largest and heaviest avian species.

On average, Himalayan griffon vultures weigh around 20 pounds, and their wingspan ranges from 8.5 to 10.2 inches, which is truly amazing.

Also, these remarkable creatures are classified as near threatened on the IUCN red list, signalling the importance of conservation efforts for their survival.

Himalayan Griffon Vulture

Andean Condor

The Andean condors hold the distinction of being the largest flying bird in the world of prey worldwide.

These Cathartid Vultures are indigenous to South America, mainly inhabiting the Andes mountains and the continent’s western coast.

With an amazing wingspan of up to 10.10 feet and a weight reaching up to 33 pounds, these remarkable birds are truly awe-inspiring.

Due to their substantial size and weight, they are often spotted soaring in areas with strong winds.

Andean Condor

Marabou Stork

Marabou storks are members of the Ciconiidae family and are native to Africa, particularly the southern region of the Sahara.

These peculiar-looking birds prefer to inhabit arid habitats and are commonly spotted near landfill sites.

An interesting aspect of these birds is their clock-like wings, skinny legs, and typical mass of hair, which earned them the nickname “Undertaker birds.”

With a wingspan that can extend up to 10.5 feet and a weight of around 20 pounds, the marabou storks certainly make for fascinating and imposing creatures.

Marabou Stork

Tristan Albatross

The Tristan albatross, a seabird from the genus Diomedea, currently has an unspecified known habitat and location. However, satellite tracking data indicate their presence in the South Atlantic region.

Male Tristan albatrosses are commonly observed near the South American Islands, while females migrate to Africa for breeding.

These sizable birds are native only to the Tristan da Cunha island, making them an endemic species to that particular location.

In addition, Tristan albatrosses possess an impressive wingspan that can reach up to 11 feet and weigh up to 16 pounds. These birds are seldom observed in their complete plumage, adding to their mystique and rarity.

Tristan Albatross

Dalmatian Pelican

The Dalmatian pelican is one of the largest flying birds dwelling in freshwater habitats.

Watching their flocks take flight is truly a mesmerizing sight, as their spectacular beauty captivates onlookers. These pelicans are found in regions spanning from Central Eurasia, ranging from the Mediterranean to the Taiwan Strait.

By a narrow margin, the Dalmatian pelican claims the title as the largest among all pelican species and is among the largest flying bird species in existence.

These remarkable birds can measure up to 6 feet in length and have an average weight of 25 pounds. Impressive in size, their wingspan can extend as far as 12 feet.

Hence, the Dalmatian pelicans hold the distinction of being the largest flying birds globally.

What makes these birds particularly fascinating is their monogamous nature. Once they find a partner, they remain together for life, living, migrating, and raising their offspring as a devoted couple.

Dalmatian Pelican

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Southern Royal Albatross

As a member of the albatross family, the southern royal albatross stands out as one of the largest species within the albatross group.

These birds boast an impressive wingspan extending up to 12 feet and an average weight of 19.8 pounds.

The southern royal albatross is native to New Zealand and primarily inhabits Subantarctic Campbell Island.

During the mating season, these birds form scattered pairs and loose colonies. However, while at sea, they often venture alone.

The colony tends to gather in the presence of food, often near fishing boats. These seabirds engage in foraging activities to feed both themselves and their offspring.

Southern Royal Albatross

Great White Pelican

Great white pelicans are commonly spotted in swamps and shallow waters, and their habitat extends from southeastern Europe to Asia and Africa.

Specifically, these birds can be found in various locations, including Chad, Tanzania, Nigeria, Northern Cameroons, Botswana, and South Africa, Zambia.

With a big wingspan of 12 feet, great white pelicans are the largest flying birds.

These beautiful creatures typically weigh between 20 to 33 pounds. They are known to reside and move in large colonies, adding to the spectacle of their presence.

In general, the males are responsible for defending their territory, and when they become aggressive, they employ their bills for both attack and protection.

Great White Pelican

Wandering Albatross

At the top of this list is the wandering albatross, the title of the largest bird. Also known as the “snowy albatross” due to its stunning white wings, these birds belong to the Diomedeidae family and boast an amazing wingspan.

The wandering albatross primarily lives and roams across the Southern Ocean, surrounding subtropical waters and antarctic and sub-antarctic regions.

As the world’s largest bird wingspan, the snowy albatross boasts an impressive wingspan reaching up to 12.1 feet. On average, this species of bird weighs around 28 pounds.

Irrespective of their weight, these birds are exceptional gliders. The wandering albatross has the skill of soaring effortlessly through the sky for hours without flapping its wings.

Wandering Albatross

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