Greater flamingo – Least Concern
Chilean flamingo – Near Threatened
Chilean flamingos live in South America and greater flamingos come from Africa. The greater flamingo is the largest and most widespread of all flamingo species. Both species live in a wide variety of freshwater and saltwater habitats, including the shallows of lakes, estuaries, and lagoons.
These filter feeders use specialized beaks to strain a variety of small arthropods from waterways. In zoos, flamingos are fed a special diet containing canthaxanthin in order to maintain their distinctive color.
Chilean flamingos are the shorter species, reaching a height of up to three-and-a-half feet and weighing up to five-and-a-half pounds. They have light pink feathers and a white beak with a large black tip. Greater flamingos are taller, growing up to five feet tall and weighing up to nine pounds. They have white feathers tinged with pink and a distinctive bubblegum pink beak with a small black tip. The typical lifespan of both species in the wild is between 20 and 30 years and up to 60 years in human care.