Do flamingos fly?

Flamingos are beautiful birds that, depending on the species, live in Asia, Africa, America or Europe. They are distinguished by being tall, having a long and curved neck and presenting pink tones that they obtain from the metabolization of carotenoids present in small crustaceans that they eat. In addition, they are quite sociable.

Flamingos are beautiful birds

Can flamingos fly?

Flamingos are medium to large birds, whose size varies according to the species, since there are six types of flamingos that are distributed in various regions: two in the Old World and four in the Americas. Thus, the height of a flamingo can range from about 0.80 m to about 1.6 m. The wingspan range is between 1 and 1.70 m and the weight can go from 1.5 to a little more than 4 kg.

As we can see, flamingos have a large wingspan that can be close to 2 meters, a distance that would go from the tip of one wing to the other. In this way, when asked if flamingos can fly or not, the answer is that flamingos can fly . It would be a great waste to have big wings and not be able to use them.

On the other hand, some types of flamingos, such as James’s flamingo ( Phoenicoparrus jamesi ), can reach great heights while moving from one place to another. Thus, this bird normally lives at about 4,000 meters above sea level, but since it is a migratory bird, that is, depending on the season or the habitat conditions, it moves to other regions, it can go down to about 2,300 meters when it is in the non-breeding season and go up again above 4,000 m to reproduce. Another reason why this flamingo migrates is because in winter the wetlands that it usually inhabits freeze, so it must move to bodies of water in a liquid state to be able to feed because it is a filter-feeding bird and, therefore, retains his food from the water he drinks.

When do flamingos fly?

Flamingos are capable of flying hundreds of kilometers if necessary and the reasons that drive them to do so are due to changes in the body of water where they are usually found, either because the availability of food decreases, or because of contamination caused by people. , arrival of predators or because of strong winters that freeze the water.

However, flamingos can also fly in search of fresh water when feeding in highly saline water. This occurs because they must compensate for the excess salt they ingest by feeding in salty water. It is common for fresh water sources to be close to the feeding area.

However, if the habitat conditions are adequate in all aspects, the flamingos will remain in the area , only making short mobilizations between the place of feeding, courtship, mating and laying the eggs, since these processes occur in areas close, but in separate spaces.

Do flamingos fly at night?

Flamingos fly at night, sometimes making round trips from their roosting site in order to feed . However, this does not limit them to flying by day, as they can do so without any problem and will not hesitate to do so in case of danger or when they need to look for food or water. In fact, for example, the Andean flamingo ( Phoenicoparrus andinus ) is more common to fly during the day.

How is the flight of flamingos?

We already know that flamingos fly, but how do they do it? When in flight, flamingos fully extend their long bodies , including their thin legs. The way they fly is sometimes compared to that of geese, since, like them, they fly in flocks . In fact, there can be thousands of flamingos flying together and constantly making vocalizations while in the sky, which helps them stick together. Let’s remember that flamingos are some of the most social birds out there, and while they are a bit territorial with their feeding space, they stay pretty close most of the time, even when nesting to hatch their eggs.

Another characteristic of flamingos in terms of flight is that they can fly long distances , exceeding 500 km in one day. These long distances occur in groups that need to migrate in winter seasons and require moving to areas with availability of water and food.

On the other hand, we can mention that before starting the flight, the flamingos begin to run and spread their wings , managing to rise quickly. They can do this either on land or in the water because they are usually at a shallow depth. When they are going to land, they can do it in the same way and reach the mainland or the water.

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