First Flamingo Egg in Ten Years
Staff are excited at the laying of a Caribbean Flamingo egg for the first time in ten years!
Director Alison Hales explains “A year ago our flamingo flock increased in size when an additional five arrived from Slimbridge Wetland Centre. With a bigger flock there is much more chance of breeding success. Twelve months on and not only do we have our first egg laid in ten years, but the rest of the flock are all building nests too.
We have a special muddy nesting lagoon in the walled garden for flamingos. They gradually build up a tall structure into a shape that suits them, adding more mud as they sit on the nest. The green algae here suits them, they love to sweep their beaks through the muddy puddles to filter out tasty algae.
Flamingos form strong pair bonds, and just one egg is laid and takes 30 days to incubate. Both male and female feeding the chick on a special ‘crop milk’.
They are long lived birds that can reach the age of 40, and able to breed from age 6. Their iconic pink feathers are made waterproof by a preen gland which releases an oil. The colouration of their feathers comes from the tiny plants and invertebrates they eat.
We don’t know if the egg will hatch but the parents are very attentive, swapping incubation duties and continually tending to their nest. Fingers crossed the egg is fertile and that Paradise Park might have its very first flamingo chick later in June.”
More infomation on Caribbean Flamingos here