American Flamingo (Pheonicopterus ruber)
Image credit: © San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance. All rights reserved.
Species: P. ruber
Plumage: Bright orange/pink; rump, head, neck, wing coverts slightly darker; black flight feathers.
Beak: Sharply downcurved; lower bill thicker; numerous keratinous plates serve as filter feeding mechanism.
|Distribution & Status||Behavior & Ecology|
Range: N. Caribbean (Cuba, Hispaniola, Bahamas); S. Caribbean Yukatan, N. coast of South America from Colombia to French Guiana, Venezuelan islands, Bonaire); Yucatan peninsula, Galapagos islands.
Habitat: saline lagoons; muddy, shallow lakes.
IUCN Status: Least Concern (2018 assessment) (BirdLife International 2018)
CITES Appendix: Appendix II (UNEP 2019)
Population in Wild: approximately 260,000-330,000
Migration: Generally non-migratory. Those that do, migrate between summer breeding grounds and winter feeding grounds.
Activity Cycle: Feeding, preening, resting, courtship; feeding is highest right before mating season.
Social Groups: Huge colonies; must be in large groups to breed.
Diet: Filter invertebrates, algae, and plant material out of shallow water and mud.
Predators: Racoons, marguay, jaguar, humans, birds of prey.
|Reproduction & Development||Species Highlights|
Sexual Maturity: 3-6 years
Courtship: Group breeding displays lead to synchronous breeding; monogamous pairing for several seasons.
Clutch Size: 1 egg
Nest: Cone-shaped mound of mud with scooped-out top; shallow moat excavated around nest.
Hatchlings: Leave nest after 5-8 days; form creches (large numbers of chicks cared for by a small number or adults).
Fledglings: 9-13 weeks
Typical Life Expectancy:
San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance
© 2003-2019 San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance. Taxonomy update 2016. IUCN status updated 2019.
How to cite: American Flamingo (Pheonicopterus ruber) Fact Sheet. c2003-2019. San Diego (CA): San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance; [accessed YYYY Mmm dd]. http://ielc.libguides.com/sdzg/factsheets/ americanflamingo.
(Note: replace YYYY Mmm dd with date accessed, e.g., 2015 Sep 10)
Disclaimer: Although San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance makes every attempt to provide accurate information, some of the facts provided may become outdated or replaced by new research findings. Questions and comments may be addressed to firstname.lastname@example.org.