Caribbean Flamingo, Phoenicopterus ruber ruber
September 2003

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Caribbean flamingo


TAXONOMY & NOMENCLATURE
(del Hoyo et al., 1992)(Feduccia, 1996)(Mindell et al., 1997)
(Ogilvie & Ogilvie, 1986)(Olsen & Feduccia, 1980)(Van Tuinen et al., 2001)

Describer (Date): Linnaeus, 1758 (Phoenicopterus ruber)
Kingdom: Animalia
    Phylum: Chordata
        Class: Aves
             Order: Phoenicopteriformes
                  Family: Phoenicopteridae
                       Genus: Phoeniconaias
                           
Species: P. minor (Lesser Flamingo)
                       Genus: Phoenicoparrus
                           
Species: P. andinus (Andean Flamingo)
                           
Species: P. jamesi (Puna Flamingo/James' Flamingo)
                       Genus: Phoenicopterus
                            Species: P. chilensis (Chilean Flamingo)
                            Species: P. ruber (Greater Flamingo)
                                 Subspecies: Phoenicopterus ruber roseus (Greater Flamingo)
                                 Subspecies:
Phoenicopterus ruber ruber (Caribbean Flamingo)

Taxonomic History and Nomenclature Phylogeny

DISTRIBUTION & HABITAT
(Baldassarre & Arengo, 2000) (Brueker & Vargas, 1998)(del Hoyo et al., 1992)
(Elphick, et al., 2001)(Ogilvie & Ogilvie, 1986)(Sprunt, 1973)

Distribution Habitat

PHYSICAL CHARACTERISTICS
(del Hoyo et al., 1992)(Fox, 1975)(Ogilvie & Ogilvie, 1986)
(Rooth, 1965)(Shannon, 2000)(Zweers et al., 1995)

Height: 120 - 145 cm (47-57 in.)
Body Weight:
males  2.8 kg (6.1 lbs), females 2.2 kg (4.8 lbs)
Wing Length: males 401-425 mm (15.8-16.7 in.), females 370-408 mm (14.6-16.0 in.)


General

Beak

  • Thick bill with sharply down turned angle; Lower bill much thicker than upper.
  • Odd shape is characteristic of the Family. Gap of an open beak is the same along entire length (=more efficient filtration); gap of straight bill would be much larger at tip.
  • Inner surface of beak has rows of keratinous plates (lamellae), covered with tiny hairs (cilia) through which food is strained out of water. Similar in function to a baleen whale.
  • Tongue fits into deep groove in lower bill and acts as a piston to pump water in and out.
  • Proximal surface of tongue with 2 longitudinal rows of spiny protuberances that point towards the throat.
feeding apparatus Flamingo head and beak, from Zweers et al. 1995.
Plumage: Coloration and Molting Pigmentation Sexual Dimorphism Comparison with other species and subspecies
BEHAVIOR & ECOLOGY
(Boylan, 2000)(del Hoyo et al., 1992)(Espino-Barros & Baldassarre, 1989a)
(Espino-Barros & Baldassarre, 1989b)(Rooth, 1965)

Activity Cycle Social Behavior

      General       Territorial Behavior       Aggression Communication

        Breeding Displays           Vocalizations Locomotion Dispersal and Migration

DIET & FEEDING
(Arengo & Baldassarre, 2002)(del Hoyo et al., 1992)
(Ehrlich, et al., 1988)(Rooth, 1965)(Zweers et al., 1995)


REPRODUCTION & DEVELOPMENT
(del Hoyo et al., 1992)(Ehrlich et al., 1988)(Rooth, 1965)(Sprunt, 1973)

Courtship Nesting Egg Laying Life Stages

      Nestlings       Young       Subadult       Adult Longevity Mortality

MANAGED CARE
(Diamant, 1997)(Elphick, et al., 2001)
(Friedmann, 2003)(Muller, 1983)


POPULATION AND CONSERVATION STATUS
(Baldassarre & Arengo, 2000)(Brueker & Vargas, 1998)
(Delany & Scott, 2002)(Espinoza et al., 2000)(FSG, 2000)

Population Status Conservation Threats to survival
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