Sep 14, 2007

1.5 Million Flamingos

Can you see the pink on this picture? This is nothing but a large group of 1.5 million Flamingos. This picture taken was by photographer Yann Arthus-Bertrand at the Lake Nakuru in Kenya's Rift Valley. This is the only place where you can expect to see up to 1.5 million Flamingos at a time. These flamingos gather there to feed on the blue-green algae which thrive in the warm alkaline waters, with their high soda content caused by intense evaporation in the burning African sun.

They feed with their long necks bent down and their bills upside down in the water, using their tongues to pump in and out to suck in the salty, alkaline water and mud. Filters in the bill catch the microscopic algae floating in the water, as well as the small shrimps which give them their pink colour. Source

There are two types of flamingo species on the Nakuru lake: the Lesser flamingo, distinguished by its deep red carmine bill and pink plumage, and the Greater, which has a bill with a black tip. Conservationists are increasingly concerned that pollution from local industries is causing the flamingo population to fall.


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