Estimated Wild Population
Scarlet ibises were named for their distinctive bright red plumage, which often has orange and pink hues. Males and females differ in size; males are larger and have a longer, curvier bill. These birds use their large beak to locate prey—mostly crayfish, crabs, insects, frogs, and fish—in the water. They have long, thin toes that help them step through water and catch their prey.
Interesting Fact 1
Scarlet ibises live in large colonies that can include thousands of individual birds, which helps protect the flock against predators.
Interesting Fact 2
Males use elaborate preening, head rubbing, and flight displays to attract females, and breeding pairs wrap their necks around one another to cement their courtship.
Interesting Fact 3
They learn to swim shortly after hatching.
Commitment to Care
Lincoln Park Zoo prioritizes individual well-being over everything else. Guided by scientific research, staff and volunteers work to provide the best welfare outcomes for each individual in the zoo’s care.
Support Your Zoo
Animals Depend On People Too
When you ADOPT an animal, you support world-class animal care by helping to provide specially formulated diets, new habitat elements, and regular veterinary checkups.
The Wish List is full of one-of-a-kind items for the zoo’s animals, including nutritious snacks and enrichment items to keep them active and healthy.
Take Action With Us
Wildlife face many daunting challenges—some global, like planet-wide climate change, and some that affect individuals, like an animal ingesting plastic—but now is not the time to despair. None of these problems are too big for us to come together and solve.