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Travel tales

Flamingos – pictorial

Pictorial series on various birdies around us.

PART 2.  Flamingos

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Since the early days into my career as a photojournalist, I longed to watch and shoot Flamingos, but this was one species that always eluded me. Well, I did manage to see a few in the zoo, but watching them in their natural habitat is different. Malshej Ghats in Maharashtra, Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary in Rajasthan, and various other places, I tried them all. But in vain.

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It was only during a long drive in the Saurashtra region of Gujarat that I suddenly came across a flock of Flamingos and what a sight it was. My long time wish was fulfilled and I happily clicked a few pics (which I am sharing with you people). The next time I got to see these noisy birds was when I visited the Bird Park in Singapore, where though captive, these birds were provided with natural conditions to breed and live.

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Flamingos are wading birds and are noisy birds that live in big groups called flocks.

Flamingos are pink or red. This is because of the small aqueous bacteria that live in water which the flamingos eat. They also eat small crayfish and algae. Baby flamingos are gray. Flamingos are very tall birds and they have long legs. They often stand on only one leg.

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Young flamingos hatch with greyish reddish plumage, but adults range from light pink to bright red. Captive flamingos are a notable exception; many turn a pale pink as they are not fed carotene at levels comparable to the wild. The Greater Flamingo is the most widespread species of the flamingo family.

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