Hot Gossip!

Glossy Ibis recently spotted on the river.  This is what they look like

The Glossy Ibis (Plegadis falcinellus) is a wading bird in the ibis family Threskiornithidae.

This is the most widespread ibis species, breeding in scattered sites in warm regions of Europe, Asia, Africa, Australia, and the Atlantic and Caribbean region of the Americas. It is thought to have originated in the Old World and spread naturally from Africa to northern South America in the 19th century. This species is migratory; most European birds winter in Africa, and in North America birds from north of the Carolinas winter farther south. Birds from other populations may disperse widely outside the breeding season.

The Glossy Ibis nests colonially in trees, often with herons. It is also gregarious when feeding in marshy wetlands; it preys on fish, frogs and other water creatures, as well as occasionally on insects.

This species is 55–65 cm long with an 88–105 cm wingspan. Breeding adults have reddish-brown bodies and shiny bottle-green wings. Non-breeders and juveniles have duller bodies. This species has a brownish bill, dark facial skin bordered above and below in blue-gray (non-breeding) to cobalt blue (breeding), and red-brown legs. Unlike herons, ibises fly with necks outstretched, their flight being graceful and often in V-formation.

Sounds made by this rather quiet ibis include a variety of croaks and grunts, including a hoarse grrrr made when breeding.

The Glossy Ibis is one of the species to which the Agreement on the Conservation of African-Eurasian Migratory Waterbirds (AEWA) applies.

This is what the Avon specimen looks like.  Obviously there is a clean up of more than derelict boats required at Bridge End!

2 Responses to “Hot Gossip!”

  • Stuart Watts:

    What an exotic, allbeit temporary, addition to our local wildlife!

    I note that the glossy ibis can be found in a variety of wetlands including marshes, estuaries, coastal bays, flooded fields and swamps. Could this migrant have been drawn to the Avon Estuary by the same diverse habitats and tranquillity that draw so many of us in this direction, including the attraction of South Efford marsh?

  • Webmaster Bill:

    I would think it most likely that the Ibis thinks South Efford marsh as it is at present is a very desirable residence.

    Two pictures of Glossy Ibis included in the avonwildlife gallery the summer plumage is more colourful than the picture I have found if anyone can get a good picture of the real thing I will change it for the one currently posted with credits of course.

    I am in the process of re-building the gallery but it is available for viewing. The slide show does not work yet but I am working on it when I can. the last version seemed to be particularly attractive to the hackers.

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