Saturday, February 18, 2017

Family Balaeniciptidae: Shoebill bird

Wild shoebills live in African wetlands. Perhaps the most eagerly sought of all African birds, the shoebill is one of the few that is likely to make an impression on those travelers who regard pursuing rare birds to be about as diverting as hanging about in windswept railway stations scribbling down train numbers.

Because of the size and weight of the bill, the bird has to have a very thick neck to support it. The shoebill has long legs and large toes that spread out to carry the bird on the plants that float beneath the surface of the water on the lakes and rivers where it lives.

The shoebill is the quintessence of the patient hunter an it can stand entirely motionless for more than 30 minutes by which time one can hardly resists the desire to poke it to see if it still alive.

Being solitary and inconspicuous hunters, Shoebill can be hard to find, even where they are common. When agitated or startled, it can fly long distances. Its name comes from the shape of its bill, which resembles a wooden shoe.
Family Balaeniciptidae: Shoebill bird
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