Animals that Migrate

Migration is a mass movement undertaken by animals. A notable feature of this phenomenon is that migration involves a return journey to the original location. This separates it from emigration, which is a permanent relocation.

Animals undergo migration in search of food, better habitats due to a change in the climate, or to find a mate. These usually occur seasonally or annually but might also occur under drastic environmental changes. A well-known example is how birds fly from the Northern Hemisphere to the south in winter.

With advances in technology, scientists have been able to track the migratory patterns of most animals. However, it has yet to be understood how certain species can determine where they need to travel and the time they must leave to reach their destination.

Animals that Migrate

List of Animals that undergo Migration




  • Galápagos Tortoise
  • Leatherback Sea Turtle


  • Atlantic Sturgeon
  • Chinook Salmon
  • Great White Shark
  • Tuna


  • Globe Skimmer Dragonfly
  • Monarch Butterfly


  • Christmas Island Red Crab
  • Humboldt Squid
  • Zooplankton

The Longest Distances covered by a Species while Migrating

  • Arctic Tern (44000 miles)
  • Bar-tailed Godwit (15500 miles)
  • Gray Whale (14000 miles)
  • Leatherback Sea Turtle (12700 miles)
  • Great White Shark (12400 miles)
  • Humpback Whale (11706 miles)
  • Globe Skimmer Dragonfly (8000-11000 miles)
  • Adelie Penguin (8000 miles)
  • Monarch Butterfly (5500 miles)
  • Porcupine Caribou (1500 miles)
  • Blue Wildebeest (500-1000 miles)
  • Plains Zebra (300 miles)


1.Why do animals migrate in winter?

Due to a combination of harsh temperatures and food scarcity, certain animals including birds, monarch butterflies, and several whales will migrate to a region with a warmer climate.

2.Why does frequent migration take place in Africa?

The herd animals in Africa, such as wildebeest and zebra, travel from the Serengeti in Tanzania to the Masai Mara in Kenya in search of food and water.