American White Ibis

ANIMAL:
American White Ibis Eudocimus albus

Type of Animal:
Ibis

Habitat:
Wetlands, marshes, coastal estuaries, mangroves/mangrove swamps, flooded pastures, swamps, mudflats, shallow areas, lawns, parks, ponds, mowed grassy areas, tree/shrub areas near brackish/fresh/saltwater, wet areas w/ sparse short vegetation, shallow coastal marshes, muddy pools, flooded fields, rice fields, lake edges, grassy fields, dense thickets, lagoons, coastal lakes, coastal areas, grassland, savanna, found from sea level to 1,640.42 ft

Location(s):
SE US, coastal Mexico, coastal Central America, Caribbean, NW coast of S America, N Colombia, NW Venezuela. Vagrant throughout continental US & SE Canada as well as interior Mexico.

Appearance:
White bird w/ pinkish-reddish facial skin/curved bill/legs & black wingtips, males have longer/stouter bills, juveniles brown above/white below w/ streaky brown neck & orange-pink legs/bill, immatures splotchy brown & white w/ light pink bill/legs, immatures look very similar to immature Glossy & Scarlet Ibis

Food/Diet:
Crustaceans, snails, insects, insect larvae, grubs, amphibians, fish, reptiles, people food, corn, potatoes, watermelon

Status in Wild:
Stable

Conservation:
Protected by Migratory Bird Treaty Act

Lifestyle:
Breeding colonies can have 1,000-10,000 birds. Flocks smaller than colonies but often number from 500-7,000 birds.

Additional Info:

Called:
Male: Cock
Female: Hen
Young: Chick
Group: Colony/ Congregation

Weight:
Male: 1.924-2.78 lbs
Female: 1.307-1.899 lbs
Young: 0.6 lbs

Gestation:
3 weeks 

Life Span:
12-15 years in wild, 20-25 years in captivity

Height:
1.75-2.3 ft, same for both sexes

Body Length:
1.75-2.3 ft, same for both sexes

Tail Length:
3.7-4.8 in, same for both sexes

Main predators of adults are raptors, monkeys, crows, snakes, crocodilians, felids, bears, procyonids, otters, & snapping turtles. Grackles, night-herons, gulls, vultures, opossums, & smaller snakes eat young.
 
Have 2.92-3.41 ft wingspan.
 
Often nest w/ other wading bird species.
 
Bills straight at hatching, curving at around 2 weeks old.
 
Courtship can often be rough, so females approach males in submissive manner during breeding season & greet w/ high-pitched squeal. Males often grab/shake female’s head, sometimes causing her to bleed.
 
They often fly in V-shaped formation.

Fun Fact(s):
They’re rather bold birds due to often being fed by people.
 
Sometimes hybridize w/ scarlet ibis in areas they meet.
 
University of Miami mascot White Ibis named Sebastian. Legend has it that ibis was chosen due to supposed ability to withstand hurricanes-name of U of Miami sports team.

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