26 Animals That Can Swim and Fly

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The animal kingdom is full of creatures that can do wild things. Owls, for example, can turn their heads 270 degrees. African lungfish can survive a year out of water, while dung beetles can push masses that are 200 times their weight, and jellyfish are basically immortal. (This is the longest-living animal in the world.)

And some animals – both birds and water creatures – have the ability to both swim and fly. To assemble a list of these animals, 24/7 Tempo consulted sites including Audubon, the National Wildlife Federation, and the Cornell Lab of Ornithology. In the case of animals such as ducks and geese, we grouped together various subgroups of the species into one category.

The majority of animals that have mastered flight and swimming are birds that eat fish or other marine life. Some are seabirds that can dive 200 feet under the water and spend most of their lives far from land. A few are marine animals that are able to breach the surface and travel through the air for yards at a time. 

Some birds, like the blue-footed booby and the Caspian tern, are known for rising to great heights before turning and plunging dramatically into the water at speeds as high as 67 miles per hour in order to catch their prey – faster than most of the fastest animals in the world.

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