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Thread: Greater Flamingo?

  1. #1
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2009

    Default Greater Flamingo?

    I was at a beach bar near Vilamoura this morning, drinking coffee and trying to avoid being sand-blasted in the wind when this bird flew past, very low over the sea, flying east, straight into the very strong wind. There was another not far behind which did not have the pink colouration. I think this is a greater flamingo, but would appreciate confirmation.

    Thanks, Ken
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  2. #2
    Senior Member Ben Miller's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2005


    Absolutely is

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Algarve, Portugal


    Hi Ken,

    As Ben says "yes it is a Greater F.". Lesser Flamingo do turn up in Algarve but they are of dubious origin, especially the ones with leg jewelry! There were a couple at Castro Marim not along ago, and now two in Andalucia which might be the same birds.

    Although we get large flocks now in Algarve (400+ at Ria de Alvor and 800+ at Lagoa dos Salgados last year) they are not confirmed as breeding birds in Portugal. At Castro Marim, which would be the most likely breeding site due to lack of disturbance, an infertile egg was found by one of the salt workers last year and a Dutch birding friend of mine recorded a barely-fledged juvenile a couple of years ago which could not have flown there.

    Ringing data shows that most of the Algarve birds are from Cota Doņana in Spain or the Camargue in France, with rumours of at least one bird having been ringed in Iran. Greater Flamingo usually take five years to reach breeding age so most of the ones we see are rather drab juveniles or sub-adults.


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