Why is the flamingo beak unique?
The flamingo has a large beak, with the biggest part on the bottom and the smallest part on the top. The top part is moveable.
This is the reverse, or opposite, of the beak of other birds. Other birds have a larger top part and a smaller, moveable bottom part.
So, why is the flamingo beak unique and reversed?
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The Garganey Duck (Spatula querquedula) is a small dabbling duck. It is a wetlands bird.
The Garganey male has a brown head, brown chest, and a broad white crescent over its eye. The rest of its feathers are grey. It has a grey beak and grey legs. The female is brown.
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The Northern Shoveler (Spatula clypeata) is a freshwater, wetlands dabbling duck. It is a bird. Spatula means spoon – it has a spoon-shaped beak.
The Northern Shoveler has a large, broad, greyish spoon-shaped beak, called a spatulate beak. It often has an orange colour on the cutting edge of its beak and lower jaw. The male has an iridescent dark-green head, white chest, chestnut belly, and chestnut side feathers. In the breeding season, the male has a white crescent on each side of its face. The female is pale mottled brown.
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Why do some waterbirds have long beaks?
A bird’s beak (also called a bill) varies in shape, depending on how the bird feeds.
Waterbirds that have long beaks – such as the herons, egrets, spoonbills, storks, and bitterns – eat fish by quickly seizing them. They spear their fish.
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The Bewick’s Tundra Swan (Cygnus bewickii) is a bird in the Anatidae family of swans. It is a smaller Eurasian waterfowl than the Mute Swan.
It is white with a yellow and black beak, a yellow eye-ring, and a rounded head. It has dark-grey legs.
The Bewick’s Tundra Swan can grow to 115-140 centimetres (45-55 inches) tall.
It lives in Europe and into southern Russia and China. It is a migratory bird, flying to warmer climates in winter in a V-formation flock.
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The Mute Swan (Cygnus olor) is a Eurasian waterfowl that lives across Europe into southern Russia and China. It is called mute because it is not as vocal as other species of swans.
The Mute Swan is white with an orange or orange-yellow beak that is bordered with black. It has black legs.
Birds do not have teeth, but the swan has serrated edges that look like teeth. They are plates called lamellae. The lamellae are useful for sifting water for plants and algae, and also frogs, worms, snails and small fish.
It grows to 125-170 centimetres (49-67 inches) tall. It is the second largest waterfowl (the Trumpeter Swan is the largest), and it is one of the heaviest flying birds.
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The Black Swan (Cygnus atratus) is native to Australia.
It is the only entirely black-coloured swan in the world. Only the tips of its flight feathers are white, which can only be seen when flying. Its bill (beak) is deep orange-red with white bands at the front.
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