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Roseate Spoonbill

Platalea ajaja

Description:

Pink and white wading bird with a large, flat, spatulate bill. "The Roseate Spoonbill is 71–86 cm (28–34 in) long, with a 120–133 cm (47–52 in) wingspan and a body mass of 1.2–1.8 kg (2.6–4.0 lb). The tarsus measures 9.7–12.4 cm (3.8–4.9 in), the culmen measures 14.5–18 cm (5.7–7.1 in) and the wing measures 32.3–37.5 cm (12.7–14.8 in) and thus the legs, bill, neck and spatulate bill all appear elongated. Adults have a bare greenish head ("golden buff" when breeding) and a white neck, back, and breast (with a tuft of pink feathers in the center when breeding), and are otherwise a deep pink. The bill is grey." - Wikipedia

Habitat:

San Diego Zoo Safari Park. "It is a resident breeder in South America mostly east of the Andes, and in coastal regions of the Caribbean, Central America, Mexico, and the Gulf Coast of the United States." - Wikipedia

Notes:

"Their pink color is diet-derived, consisting of the carotenoid pigment canthaxanthin. Another carotenoid, astaxanthin, can also be found deposited in flight and body feathers. The colors can range from pale pink to bright magenta, depending on age and location. Unlike herons, spoonbills fly with their necks outstretched. They alternate groups of stiff, shallow wingbeats with glides." - Wikipedia

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San Diego, California, USA

Spotted on Apr 3, 2012
Submitted on Apr 5, 2012

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Reference