The Common Spoonbill
File:Spoonbill50.jpg The Common Spoonbill (Platalea leucorodia) is a wading bird of the ibis and spoonbill family Threskiornithidae. This species is widespread across southern Eurasia from Spain to Japan, and north Africa. Most birds migrate to the tropics in winter, with European breeders going to Africa.
It occurs in marshy wetlands with some open shallow water, nesting in colonies in trees or reedbeds. It does not usually share colonies with storks or herons. Usually four eggs are laid.
This species is almost unmistakable through most of its range. The breeding bird is all white except for its dark legs, black bill with a yellow tip, and a yellow breast patch like a pelican. It has a crest in the breeding season.
Non-breeders lack the crest and breast patch, and immatures have a pale bill and black tips to the primary flight feathers. Unlike herons, spoonbills fly with their necks outstretched.
Common Spoonbill differs from African Spoonbill in that the latter species has a red face and legs, and no crest.
This spoonbill feeds on various fish, frogs and other water creatures.
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Animal in Armenia
Rare species. Included in the Red Book of the former USSR.
Habitat in Armenia
In 1930 – 40’s was a regular bird met in the valley of Arax and the reservoirs of Lake Sevan.
Number in the wild
Small flocks of 5 – 10 birds registered during the spring flight and summer time in 1972 – 1973. Flocks of 10 – 25 birds can be seen flying Ararat valley.
Reasons for decrease in number
Decrease in water territory.
Number in captivity
Frequently met in the zoos of the former Soviet countries.
Measures of protection taken
Hunting is forbidden in the territory of Armenia.