While this is undoubtably a beautiful bird, it is not a wild Flamingo.
It has been in the Tampa area for several years and most likely got
loose from a zoo in Sarasota. It spends most of its time near the mouth
of the Alafia River in an area called the Kitchen. This is were Rich
and Ann Paul see it regularly. It has been seen along the Courtney
Campbell causeway previously though. The area that I cover on the Tampa
CBC includes the base of the causeway and I have seen this bird on two
of the last three CBCs, including this years.
Despite it not being a wild bird, it is well worth looking at, because
it is close enough to get wonderful views (and photographs). As opposed
to the wild birds in Florida Bay in Everglades NP, which are often at
the limit of visibility.
Dick Beeler wrote:
>First, GREAT picture.
>Second, an assumption: This is NOT a countable wild bird? (Well, OK, that
>is really a question, not an assumption.)
>Finally, a REAL question: Are their any field marks which would help
>establish if this is a wild bird, and not an escapee? I know that there has
>been some discussion about the status of the flamingos, especially the
>individual bird, in ENP. Are these issues decided solely on location, or are
>there characteristics that one might observe?
>Fort Myers, FL
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