Watch as baby flamingos practise their foraging skills in a zoo enclosure

Baby flamingos at Zoo Atlanta in Georgia have been practising their foraging skills in little pans of water in their enclosure.

The zoo captured an adorable video of the young chicks splashing around, behaviour that will ultimately help them find and eat the crustaceans that will give them their characteristic pink colour.

The first flamingo chicks to hatch this year at the zoo were born on August 18.

Posting the video to Facebook, the zoo said: “This might just look like a flamingo spinning around, but he is really showing off his foraging instincts.”

Flamingo chick foraging behavior

This might just look like a flamingo spinning around, but he is really showing off his foraging instincts. He is stamping his feet to scare up any tiny crustaceans, then using his beak to filter out the animals from the water column. Obviously, he’s just practicing here, since there aren’t any crustaceans to be found in this water pan. You can see small pellets of flamingo food that the chicks start tasting at around 5 days old. They won’t eat enough of it to sustain themselves until they are closer to 6 weeks old. #TakeoverTuesday – Rebecca Young, Assistant Curator of Ambassador Animals

Posted by Zoo Atlanta on Tuesday, September 11, 2018

The adorable video now has more than 10,000 views from visitors.

Rebecca Young, assistant curator of ambassador animals at the zoo, said: “He is stamping his feet to scare up any tiny crustaceans, then using his beak to filter out the animals from the water column.

“Obviously, he’s just practising here, since there aren’t any crustaceans to be found in this water pan. You can see small pellets of flamingo food that the chicks start tasting at around five days old. They won’t eat enough of it to sustain themselves until they are closer to six weeks old.”

Flamingo chicks develop their pink feathers at around six months old; the colour comes from the rich sources of carotenoid pigments in the algae and small crustaceans the birds eat.

- Press Association


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