This White Ibis was was found and reported by a local birder in Racine, WI. The location was the Wolf Lake boat landing at Richard Bong State Recreation Area in Kenosha County, WI. Since the White Ibis was so far from its natural range, I knew I had to make the trip down to Bong SRA. When I arrived early in the morning, it was viewable from the boat landing but a long ways off. I spent at least 5 hours there trying to get some nice pictures as it moved around the drained lake bed from one spot to another. Because of the locations of the bird and the bright sun light, I knew a return trip would be required. The next morning I returned and the bird was in a different location than the previous day. I had better views and even took a short video. The White Ibis was a new life bird for me. It is a beautiful bird and I was glad I made the trips to see it.
Photographs were taken on June 11, 2013.
Binomial name: Eudocimus albus
Category: Ibises and Spoonbills
Description: White feathers with black wingtips (typically only visible during flight), long red legs and red bill with a downward curve
Size: 22” – 27”
Weight: 26.5 oz. to 37 oz.
Habitat: Marshes, ponds, wetlands, and wet lawns
Diet: Insects, crayfish, and small fish
Nesting: Males secure and deliver nesting materials while the female constructs the nest, usually in a tree or shrub, sometimes over water. The female will lay 1 – 5 eggs which are then incubated by the male. During the incubation period, he will aggressively defend the nest, even going into a pattern of starvation. 2-3 weeks later, the eggs hatch both parents will feed and care for the fledglings.
Notes: The White Ibis congregates in huge flocks for feeding, nesting, and roosting. Despite their social nature, Ibises typically insist on grooming themselves rather than engaging in allopreening. In fact, nearly half their day may be spent on resting and roosting activities which includes bathing, preening, and grooming their feathers.
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