Strutting Greater Flamingos at the Zoo

Greater Flamingo (Phoenicopterus roseus) at Cincinnati Zoo by Dan First walk

Greater Flamingo (Phoenicopterus roseus) at Cincinnati Zoo by Dan – First walk

The Cincinnati Zoo has the Greater Flamingo (Phoenicopterus roseus) species, another beautiful creation from God, that they take for a walk. They walked past us twice so close you could touch them, which we didn’t.

It was really neat to watch them just strolling along as if you were walking your dogs or whatever. The Bible says:

For every kind of beast and bird, of reptile and creature of the sea, is tamed and has been tamed by mankind. (James 3:7 NKJV)

Well, the strolls were definitely an indication that these Greater Flamingos were in control of their trainers.

Greater Flamingo (Phoenicopterus roseus) at Cincinnati Zoo by Lee

Greater Flamingo (Phoenicopterus roseus) at Cincinnati Zoo by Lee

The Greater Flamingo (Phoenicopterus roseus) is the most widespread species of the flamingo family. They belong to the Phoenicopteridae – Flamingos Family. It is found in parts of Africa, southern Asia (coastal regions of Pakistan and India), and southern Europe (including Spain, Albania, Turkey, Greece, Cyprus, Portugal, Italy and the Camargue region of France). Some populations are short distance migrants, and sightings north of the breeding range are relatively frequent; however, given the species’ popularity in captivity, whether or not these are truly wild individuals is a matter of some debate.

This is the largest species of flamingo, averaging 43–60 in (110–150 cm) tall and weighing 4.4–8.8 lbs (2–4 kg). The largest male flamingos have been recorded at up to 74 in (187 cm) tall and 10 lbs (4.5 kg).[2] It is closely related to the American Flamingo and Chilean Flamingo.

Greater Flamingo (Phoenicopterus roseus) at Cincinnati Zoo by Lee

Greater Flamingo (Phoenicopterus roseus) at Cincinnati Zoo by Lee

Like all flamingos, this species lays a single chalky-white egg on a mud mound. Most of the plumage is pinkish-white, but the wing coverts are red and the primary and secondary flight feathers are black. The bill is pink with a restricted black tip, and the legs are entirely pink. The call is a goose-like honking. Sub-adult flamingos are whitish-grey and only attain the pink coloration several years into their adult life.

The bird resides in mudflats and shallow coastal lagoons with salt water. Using its feet, the bird stirs up the mud, then sucks water through its bill and filters out small shrimp, seeds, blue-green algae, microscopic organisms and mollusks. The Greater Flamingo feeds with its head down and its upper jaw is movable and not rigidly fixed to its skull.

Greater Flamingo (Phoenicopterus roseus) Juvenile at Cincinnati Zoo by Lee

Greater Flamingo (Phoenicopterus roseus) Juvenile at Cincinnati Zoo by Lee

The average lifespan in captivity, according to Zoo Basel, is over 60 years.

The oldest known Greater Flamingo, a resident of the Adelaide Zoo in Australia, is at least 77 years old. The bird’s exact age is not known; however, he was already a mature adult when he arrived in Adelaide in 1933, and he was still there as of 2011.

Here is a short video of them walking through the Cincinnati Zoo.

(Wikipedia with editing)

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