Take a look at these fun facts about flamingos!
What is a flamingo? Well, a flamingo is a very unique-looking tropical bird that likes to wade in the water.
They have hot pink feathered bodies, long curvy necks, and very long lanky legs. Almost every characteristic of a flamingo makes them stand out and this is why they are so extraordinary. Wouldn’t you agree?
Let’s check out some interesting facts about these beautiful birds!
Fascinating Flamingo Facts
Flamingos Eat with Their Head Upside-Down
Found in lagoons or mudflats, flamingos like to hang out here to eat. Wading in the shallow saltwater, they stir up mud with their feet and then dive headfirst into the murky waters. They collect a beak full of mud and water with the hopes of finding a scrumptious snack.
A flamingo’s beak is kind of like a strainer. It is made to hold the food in their mouth while their tongue gets rid of the muddy water. Flamingo’s do all of this with their head upside-down. How cool is that?
Flamingos are Pink Because of What They Eat
A flamingo’s diet mainly consists of crustaceans, algae, and plankton. Food such as brine shrimp and blue green algae are excellent sources of carotenoids.
Carotenoids are natural pigments such as red, yellow, and orange, and they are what make a flamingo’s fur turn pink. In fact, flamingos at the zoo will sometimes turn white if their diet doesn’t consist of food with carotenoids. Wow!
Flamingos Flock in Groups
Flamingos like to be in large groups made up of several hundred birds. They like to be in groups because they find safety in numbers.
They also like being social with others, similar to people. Being in a big flock helps them find a mate, too. They do so by performing elaborate dances to attract another flamingo.
Flamingos can Fly
It’s not too common to see a flamingo in flight, but they do fly! Flamingos head to the skies for migration when they are looking for new bodies of water, when they are in search of warmer temperatures, and when they want to find a mate.
Baby Flamingos are not Pink
Flamingo chicks, or baby flamingos, are not born with pink feathers. Instead, their feathered fur is grey and white. Over the first year or so, they will turn pink, as they eat more foods with carotenoids.
Flamingo chicks are also born with straight beaks. Their beaks begin to curve as they grow older and mature into beautiful adult birds.
Flamingos Can Sleep Standing
Flamingos can actually sleep standing on just one leg. It is believed that it takes a lot of muscle for a flamingo to stand on both legs; therefore, standing on one leg uses up less energy.
Because flamingos can stand on one leg for long periods of time, sometimes they fall asleep. It is also thought that by keeping one leg tucked under their belly, they can stay warmer. How interesting!
Fun Facts About Flamingos for Kids
Flamingos sure are fascinating! With their brightly colored feathers, upside-down eating habits, and the ability to sleep standing up, flamingos are truly unique. What do you think about flamingos? Have you ever seen a real flamingo?
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