Monday, November 10, 2008

Common Spoonbills

This is a wading bird of the Ibis and Spoonbill family. The bird is quite easy to identify in all the areas where it is found. The breeding bird is completely in white with black legs and dark bill with a yellow tip. Also has a yellow breast patch. It has a crest during the breeding season. Non breeders lack the crest and breast patch. Immature birds have a pale bill and black tips to the primary feathers. The spoonbill feeds on frogs, fish and other water creatures. The spoonbill occurs on marshy wetlands and in open shallow water. It nest in colonies in trees or on reeds.

I saw the above birds at Ranthambore national park, aloof from a crowd of other birds. These birds had moved to the edge of the pond not visited by other birds and were intent on getting their prey. Though we were really far from the pond, the intent stare of the spoonbills and their reflection on the water were too captivating for me to let go.

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