Bird watchers around the world are alarmed over the decreasing population of flamingos. One of the reasons is the recent popularity of exotic flamingo meat in several countries, which makes flamingos a target for hunters who sell this delicacy to the markets and restaurants mainly in Asian countries, with India and China being the major consumers.
Photoshop flamingos any way you wish. Some examples are: showing what life would be like if flamingos ruled the world, including flamingos in paintings,
using flamingos in cricket (recall "Alice in Wonderland") or any other sport.
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This contest is fueled by the following news: Flamingo (Latin - Phoenicopteridae) is a family of birds, only wading birds in genus Phoeriicopteri.
Flamingo has thin long legs, flexible neck and feathering, color of which varies from white to red. Their special distinctive feature is the massive curved-downwards beak, which helps the flamingos to filter food from water or mud. In contrast to other majority of birds, mobile portion of the beak in flamingo is not the lower one but instead the upper portion. Redness of feathering depends on the quantity of carotenoid is eaten along with food. Young birds and also birds in captivity, which intake insufficient quantity of carotenoid, are white in color.
Occurrence and inhabitation area:
Flamingos are found in Africa, South-East and Central Asia and also in Southern and Central parts of America. Colonies of pink flamingos also exist in southern parts of Spain, France and on Sardinia. This sort is the largest and widespread sort in species. Its height touches 130 cm and it is found on all continents of the Old World. Flamingos live in large groups on coasts of small ponds or lagoons. They can withstand extreme natural environment, in which only few other types of animals survive. For example, they are found in highly salty or alkaline lakes. Besides, they are capable of withstanding huge temperature variations. Colonies of flamingos can consist of up to one million individuals. However, poaching and destruction of eyries of flamingos have led to reduction of flamingo population worldwide.
Food of flamingo consists of small crustaceous, larva of insects and seaweeds. Pink color of flamingos is due to tiny red maxillopods, which contain Beta carotene. Flamingos are specialized only on several kinds of food and it is reflected in the form of their beak, which helps them in food catching.
In thick mud, flamingo, as a rule, lays one or occasionally, two eggs. As pigeons, flamingo also secretes special liquid in its digestive apparatus and the flamingos feed their nestlings with special liquid. Young birds feed on special liquid for two months till their beaks grow enough so that the young birds can filter the feed from water. So that the flamingos retained their famous color, the flamingos are fed with not only shrimps but also carrots, which contain abundant carotene.
Standing on one leg:
By standing on one leg, flamingos, storks and other long-legged birds stand on one leg to reduce the heat loss during wind blowing. Heat loss is sufficiently high and is lost through uncovered feathers of leg due to their disadvantageous ratio of volume to surface and hence the birds try to hold legs sequentially in heat of well insulated feathering. From one side, standing on one leg looks extremely inconvenient and difficult position, but no extra efforts are required from flamingo. Special physiological adaptation prevents bending of bearing leg, due to which leg remains lifted even without extra muscular force. With the help of similar mechanism, the bird does not fall from branches of tree even if it falls asleep. If it clambers up on to the branch, then the finger joints on legs automatically and strongly clasp the branch.
Six sorts, which can be combined into one and the same genus (Phoenicoparrus), are found in flamingo family:
o Andean Flamingo (Phoenicopterus andinus);
o Caribbean Flamingo (Phoenicopterus ruber);
o Lesser Flamingo (Phoeniconaias minor);
o Greater Flamingo (Phoenicopterus roseus);
o James's Flamingo (Phoenicoparrus jamesi);
o Chilean Flamingo (Phoenicopterus chilensis)