flamingo

Life in the Mud:

Flamingos eat with their heads upside down. They use their feet to kick up the mud beneath them. Their uniquely shaped beaks and bristly tongues filter out tiny bits of food from the muddy water.

Standing on one leg helps flamingos conserve body heat — but they do it when it’s warm too, so scientists believe it is also the most comfortable resting position.

At Reid Park Zoo:

In an effort to increase breeding behavior, keepers help flamingos make nests. A nest is just a mud mound with a bowl-shaped depression in the top.

Flamingo feathers are pink from the food they eat. When a flamingo feather falls out, it loses its pink color.

Reid Park Zoo has hatched four flamingo chicks in the last several years. The youngest, Tweedle, was hatched in October of 2015. Flamingo chicks start out downy and gray; then start growing their pink feathers after a few months.

flamingo0020z
Tweedle at 6 months

 

Classifications

Species Name:
Chilean Flamingo
Scientific Name:
Phoenicopterus chilensis
Continent:
South America
Proud Parents:
Howard F. Slater
Nancy Walter
Amanda Sandoval
Cassie D. & Jim Williams