The roseate spoonbill feeds on minnows, fish, shrimp, water beetles, slugs and bits of vegetable matter. The bill is not used as a scoop, but as a super-sensitive forceps. A network of nerves in the bill allows the bird to feed in clouded water or probe in mud, where invisible prey must be felt to be caught. Flies in linear flocks or V-shaped formations, and sometimes shares nests with or adjacent to wood storks, ibises, herons or other large water birds. It is usually silent; however, when alarmed, it utters a low inquisitive, "huh-huh-huh" sound.
The above picture was taken at Cincinnati zoo, in May, 2001.
Life on Earth