African spoonbill in exhibit

African Spoonbill

Scientific Name
Platalea alba
Sub-saharan Africa
Marshes, swamps, riverbanks, plains, and savannas
Estimated Wild Population
African spoonbill in exhibit Endangered Status Graph - Least Concern Endangered Status Graph - Least Concern

More Information

African spoonbills have striking white plumage, a featherless red face, and long red legs. Their elongated, thin beak ends in a flat, extended bulge resembling a spoon, which helps with capturing fish, crustaceans, and insects. They build nests made from sticks and leaves in trees above water. During breeding season, females lay three to five spotted eggs.

Did You Know?

African spoonbills catch food by opening their bill in the water, sweeping it back and forth, and snapping at prey.

Their long legs and thin, pointed toes allow them to walk easily through varying depths of water.

These wading birds can have a nearly three-foot wingspan.

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Species Survival Plan®

We cooperate with other members of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums to manage the zoo population of this species through a Species Survival Plan®.

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