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Wading Birds

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Published on Mar 1, 2008

Photo slideshow of various wading birds, pictures taken by me in the wild & in animal parks.

0:00-0:17 Common Gallinule or Gallinula chloropus (nest, chick & adult)
You'll notice that the chick still has a vestigial finger & claw on its wing. Gallinules are members of the Rail Family, inhabiting the marshlands of the Americas, Eurasia & Africa.

0:18-0:20 Limpkin or Arumus guarauna (adult)
Inhabiting the marshlands of S. Georgia, Florida, Cuba, Central America to Argentina. Almost overhunted to extinction for food by the early 1900s in the American South, their numbers have rebounded significantly due to being protected by law & sanctuaries.

0:21-0:23 Sacred Ibis or Threskiornis aethiopicus (adult)
Found primarily in sub-Saharan Africa, these birds were venerated & often mummified by Ancient Egyptians as a symbol of the god Thoth.

0:24-0:47 White Ibis or Eudocimus albus (immature & adult)
Inhabiting the mid-Atlantic coast of the United States south through most of the New World tropics, White Ibis feed by probing with its long, downcurved beak. Its diet consists of various fish, frogs & other water creatures, as well as insects.

0:48-0:56 Scarlet Ibis or Eudocimus ruber(nest & adult)
Found in tropical South America & Trinidad & Tobago, they have been introduced into South Florida. Their diet includes crustaceans & similar small marine animals. A juvenile Scarlet Ibis is grey/white in color; as it grows the ingestion of red crabs in the tropical swamps gradually produces the characteristic scarlet plumage.

0:57-1:19 Chilean Flamingo or Phoenicopterus chilensis (adult)
The Flamingo's peculiar beak strains water rich in organic matter, filtering for small mollusks, crustaceans, insects, fishes, algae, diatoms, & vegetable matter. The pink coloration of its feathers comes from carotene found in the small shrimp they eat.

1:20-1:33 Marabou Stork or Leptoptilos crumeniferus (adult)
Found in Africa, they are often referred to as the stork with the habits of a vulture, since they often feed on carrion.

1:34-1:51 African Crowned Crane or Balearica pavonina (immature & adult)
Found over much of Africa from the Sudan & Ethiopia southwards, these cranes indulge in spectacular courtship dances, usually mating for life. Unlike other cranes, African Crowned Cranes are known to perch in trees, as well as inhabit marshlands & plains.

1:52-2:02 Sarus Crane or Grus antigone (nest, chick & adult)
Reaching 200 cm (6.6 ft) in Indian males, Sarus Cranes are the world's tallest flying bird. They are found in India, Pakistan, Southeast Asia & Queensland Australia. Mating for life, they have become symbolic of marraige & fidelity in some Asian cultures.

2:03-2:04 Cattle Egret or Bubulcus ibis (adult)
Cattle Egrets originally came from Africa, but are now found around the globe. They first appeared in South America in 1887 & in North America in 1941.

2:05-2:22 Green Heron or Butorides virescens (chick & adult)
Found in the Americas, they were formerly called Little Green Herons or Green-backed Herons.

2:23-2:31 Little Blue Heron or Egretta caerulea (adult)
Found in the Americas, their breeding habitat is sub-tropical swamps, usually nesting in colonies with other herons.

2:32-2:42 Black Crowned Night Heron or Nycticorax nycticorax (immature & adult)
Found in the Americas, Europe, Asia & Africa, these birds stand still at the water's edge & wait to ambush prey, mainly at night. They primarily eat small fish, crustaceans, frogs, aquatic insects, & small mammals.

2:43-2:47 Louisiana Heron or Hydranassa tricolor (adult)
Also called the Tricolored Heron, their range extends from the Southeastern United States through Central America to the northern reaches of South America.

2:48-3:09 Great Blue Heron or Ardea herodias (adult)
Common throughout North & Central America, they are the largest of the North American herons. They primarily eat fish, but also eat small animals including frogs, snakes, mice & voles.

3:10-4:01 Great Egret or Casmerodius albus(adult)
In 1953 the Great Egret in flight was chosen as the symbol of the National Audubon Society, which was formed in part to prevent the killing of birds for their feathers. Also known as the Great White Egret, White Heron, or Common Egret, & in New Zealand as Kōtuku (where they are still precariously endangered). They are found in most of the tropical & warmer temperate parts of the world.

3:22-3:25 Great Egret with Mute Swan

3:26-3:29 Great Egret with Sika Deer

Many birds go through an immature phase in development in which they may be as large as adults, but they have different colorations. Examples of this are shown here with the White Ibis, African Crowned Crane, and Black Crowned Night Heron.

All photographs are the property of Dafttool & cannot be reproduced or used without the expressed authorization of Dafttool.

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