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A bizarre wading bird of the southern coasts, the Roseate Spoonbill uses its odd bill to strain small food items out of the water. Its bright pink coloring leads many Florida tourists to think they have seen a flamingo.

 The Roseate Spoonbill is a striking and unique wading bird. It has white feathers on its back, chest and neck. The wing feathers are various shades from pale pink to vivid magenta. Its head is unfeathered and has a pale green colour with a black band around the base and its eyes are red. It takes up to three years for this species to obtain its mature plumage and begin breeding. The juvenile is white to very pale pink and has a feathered head.

Spork’s Story

We have introduced an exciting new resident at PRWC. A roseate spoonbill was transferred to us by our friends at the Wildlife Center of Venice. They had admitted the adult male bird with an old healed fracture of its wing. The broken bone had already fused, but the bird is unable to fly. Since they do not have the luxury of exhibit habitats at their facility, they offered to transfer the bird to PRWC.

We wanted to give our new Roseate Spoonbill a name. We held a contest to allow the public to vote for their choice. Unlike other recent and pending elections, this one has some great selections from which to choose:
Roosevelt (nickname-Rosey, like Rosey Greer)
Frasier (from the French word for strawberry)
Spork (a nod to his spoon-shaped bill with the filtering grooves along the front)
(Pink) Floyd (if we need to explain this one, you are either too young or listened to too much Pink Floyd music to remember!)

 

 

 

 

 

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Cool Facts:  The oldest recorded Roseate Spoonbill was at least 15 years, 10 months old when it was recaptured and re-released during a scientific study in Florida.

Habitat: Marsh

Food: Fish

Nesting:

Nest Placement: Trees

Behavior: Probing

Conservation:  Roseate Spoonbill populations increased throughout their continental range between 1966 and 2014, according to the North American Breeding Bird Survey. The North American Waterbird Conservation Plan estimates a continental population of 20,500 breeding birds, rates the species a 16 out of 20 on the Continental Concern Score, and lists it as a Species of Moderate Concern. Roseate Spoonbill is not on the 2014 State of the Birds Watch List. [ facts source: Cornell University – All About Birds ]

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