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Hanging by the skin of her teeth

American daredevil Erendira Wallenda performed a series of heart-stopping acrobatic moves over the teeming waters of Niagara Falls, including hanging by her teeth from a helicopter.

The US media said her stunt on Thursday set a Guinness World Record for height, breaking one established by her husband Nik, when he dangled 76m above Silver Dollar City in Branson, Missouri, in 2011.

Mrs Wallenda comes from a family of stunt artists and world-record chasers. Dressed in a bodysuit, the 36-year-old mother of three sat and dangled from a large hoop tethered to the bottom of the helicopter, at one point hooking her feet over the hoop and hanging upside down with her arms stretched towards the water, reported Agence France-Presse.

She dangled above the falls, at the border between Canada and the United States, for around seven or eight minutes.

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She did splits hanging off the hoop backwards, before biting into an iron jaw and briefly dangling by her teeth about 91m in the air.

Speaking to reporters, Mrs Wallenda described the experience as "amazing" and "beautiful", and said she had listened to music throughout her stunt so as to block out any sounds from the spectators below.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 17, 2017, with the headline 'Hanging by the skin of her teeth'. Print Edition | Subscribe