PINK FLAMINGOS

SUNDAY 3rd MAY 2020

FLAMINGOS 

  Six years ago, Margaret and I journeyed to the Isle of Wight, where we visited the wonderful Seaview Wildlife Centre. Sadly during November 2015, this interesting wildlife attraction closed down, due to problems with legislation. We were fortunate to be able to act as keepers for the day in 2014, which enabled us to help to feed and take care of the animals and birds for a single day. Although this involved feeding a variety of birds and animals, including penguins and wallabies, I intend to focus on the spectacular pink flamingos. 

We snapped these photographs during our visit, although we didn’t get to actually feed these shy birds, probably because some of them were nurturing young.

I understand, Flamingos in captivity have to have their wings clipped to prevent them flying away. I did enquire whether the wildlife park had any problems with predators such as foxes, as I’m sure birds with clipped wings would be unable to fly away.

 I found these interesting facts concerning flamingos on the internet. Mainly from the National Geographic magazine.

 Greater flamingos live and feed in groups called flocks or colonies. They find safety in numbers, which helps to protect individual birds from predators while their heads are down in the mud.

 The pink colour of flamingos is summed up by the phrase, “You are what you eat” This holds more truth than it might for humans. The bright pink color of flamingos comes from beta carotene, a red-orange pigment that’s found in high quantities within the algae, larvae, and brine shrimp that flamingos eat in their wetland environment.

Flamingos stand on one leg because it’s physiologically easier for them to do so. The way their legs work means they can rest all of their weight on one side without having to use their muscles to maintain balance.

 It is thought that the legend of the rising of the Phoenix was actually based on a bright pink flamingo taking flight.

 Wikipedia has a large fount of facts about these spectacular birds and it is well worth a visit to read up on the lifestyle of these interesting birds. There are several sites that deal with the myths and legends concerning flamingos  I may collate and explore those facts in another blog post.

Margaret and I enjoyed our visit where we were  to get close enough to the resident flamingos to enable us to take these interesting photographs.

© Written by John Yeo all rights reserved.