Friday, June 13, 2014

Creature Feature #237: Flamingo

The Flamingo is a long-legged wading bird who makes his home in mudflats and lagoons. His large beak is used for filter-feeding, straining through the water for brine shrimp and blue-green algae. The carotenoids in this diet are what lead to his pinkish colouration. He is extremely social, living in vast flocks that can number in the thousands. Within this massive gathering, both male and female dance an elaborate courtship ritual, to attract a mate. The bonded pair then find and defend a breeding site. Together they raise a single chick, and at two weeks old she is pushed into a creche with other chicks. This allows both adults to feed whilst leaving their chick in relatively safe circumstances.

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