Lesser Flamingo

Phoenicopterus minor (Phoeniconaias minor) - Phoenicopteridae - Phoenicopteriformes. | Jamnagar, Gujarat, India
Canon EOS 7D, EF500mm f/4L IS USM +1.4x, ISO 200, Shutter speed 1/1000 Sec, Aperture f/5.6

Lesser Flamingo


Lesser Flamingo is the smallest species of flamingo, though is a tall and largish bird by most standards. The species can weigh from 1.2 to 2.7 kg (2.6 to 6.0 lb). The standing height is around 80 to 90 cm (31 to 35 in). The total length (from beak to tail) and wingspan are in the same range of measurements, from 90 to 105 cm (35 to 41 in).

Most of the plumage is pinkish white. The clearest difference between this species and Greater Flamingo, the only other Old World species, is the much more extensive black on the bill. Size is less helpful unless the species are together, since the sexes of each species also differ in height.

The Lesser Flamingo may be the most numerous species of flamingo, with a population that (at its peak) probably numbers up to two million individual birds. This species feeds primarily on Spirulina, algae which grow only in very alkaline lakes. Although blue-green in color, the algae contain the photosynthetic pigments that give the birds their pink color. Their deep bill is specialized for filtering tiny food items. The lesser flamingo also feeds on shrimp