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Last Updated: Friday, 25 May 2007, 12:00 GMT 13:00 UK
Goose smashes sea-crossing record
Barbow the goose
Barbow the goose broke the record previously set by Godzilla
A barnacle goose from south west Scotland has smashed the record time for crossing the North Sea to Norway.

Barbow - named by a school on the Solway Firth - made the trip from Caerlaverock in just five hours.

A satellite tracking device clocked the speedy bird at an average speed of over 75mph from the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust's Dumfries and Galloway reserve.

The previous quickest crossing was by fellow barnacle goose Godzilla who made the journey in about eight hours.

Barbow is part of a project to tag and track the travels of 10 migrating geese.

The more we follow the geese, the faster they seem to get
Dr Larry Griffin
WWT project team leader

He set off from the Solway Firth on Saturday evening at a speed of at least 78mph - the maximum speed the transmitters can record.

Dr Larry Griffin, who leads the WWT's project team, said they had been shocked by how quickly the birds made the journey.

"The more we follow the geese, the faster they seem to get," he said.

"We were already impressed with Godzilla rapid progress but Barbow has given goose travel a whole new dimension."

'Very impressive'

Dr Griffin said the record had been set in far from ideal conditions.

"By reaching speeds in the region of 80mph it looks highly likely that he crossed the North Sea in five hours," he said.

"It is very impressive that he sustained such high speeds as the tail winds, although in his favour, were not particularly strong - Godzilla has nothing on this goose."

All 10 geese were named and championed by Solway schools and Barbow was named by Bowness-on-Solway Primary School in Wigton.

Godzilla the goose in speedy feat
20 Apr 07 |  South of Scotland
Wild geese flocking to Scotland
23 Nov 05 |  Scotland
Rare birds flock to reserve
28 Dec 02 |  Scotland

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