JUN 27, 2018 7:58 PM PDT

Kansas Zoo Flamingo Escapee Spotted in Texas

WRITTEN BY: Anthony Bouchard

Kansas Zoo lost two of its flamingos in 2005 after negligent staff allowed them to go too long between feather trimming procedures, a measure that was used to prevent the birds from flying away.

Now, an official with the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department claims to have spotted one of these flamingo escapees in Lavaca Bay of the Lone Star State some 13 years later.

Wildlife experts captured this picture of a flamingo that escaped from Kansas Zoo in 2003.

Image Credit: TX Parks & Wildlife/Twitter

Many captive animals carry tags for identification purposes, and these flamingos were no exception. One of them bore the number 347 on its tag, while the other carries the number 492.

When the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department official happened upon the unusual flamingo sighting this summer, one of the first things he noticed was the tag it wore on its right leg. Upon taking a closer look, the tag displayed the number 492.

Related: Florida man jailed after lethally attacking a flamingo at Busch Gardens

Flamingo #492 has allegedly been spotted throughout various states since it escaped Kansas Zoo in 2005, but flamingo #347 seems to have dropped off the face of the Earth; many animal experts believe that it may be deceased.

Both flamingos, which were native to Tanzania, arrived at the United States in 2003 with 38 others. Unfortunately, they were too mature to have their wings clipped, a means of permanently disabling the birds’ flight capabilities.

Trimming their feathers was the next best option, but it required constant maintenance. Tantamount to a person receiving a haircut, trimming a bird’s feathers is a painless procedure; it reduces the wing’s surface area and prevents it from catching any air when flapped.

Related: Tropical birds may live longer than their temperate counterparts

Flamingos can live to be approximately 40 years old and given that flamingo #492 is thought to be around 20-23 years of age, this probably won’t be its final sighting in the wild. The only question is: where might it pop up next?

Source: BBC, New York Times

About the Author
  • Fascinated by scientific discoveries and media, Anthony found his way here at LabRoots, where he would be able to dabble in the two. Anthony is a technology junkie that has vast experience in computer systems and automobile mechanics, as opposite as those sound.
You May Also Like
MAY 07, 2020
Health & Medicine
Mosquito Feeding Time Shift Impacts Malaria Prevention Methods
MAY 07, 2020
Mosquito Feeding Time Shift Impacts Malaria Prevention Methods
Thanks to the success of insecticide-treated bed nets, mosquitos seem to have shifted their feeding times away from the ...
MAY 25, 2020
Microbiology
The Symbiotic Bacteria That Stow Away in Ship-Destroying Clams
MAY 25, 2020
The Symbiotic Bacteria That Stow Away in Ship-Destroying Clams
Shipworms are known as the 'termites of the sea.' They are not actually worms; these infamous mollusks that have brought ...
MAY 25, 2020
Plants & Animals
Cuttlefish Are Amazing, and Here's Why
MAY 25, 2020
Cuttlefish Are Amazing, and Here's Why
Many people have heard of the cuttlefish but haven’t actually seen one in person – and we’re just goin ...
JUL 11, 2020
Earth & The Environment
The disappearance of Australia's seagrass
JUL 11, 2020
The disappearance of Australia's seagrass
Australia is losing its seagrass. That’s according to a new report released by marine scientists at the Centre for ...
JUL 15, 2020
Technology
Tiny Cameras: Viewing The World Through an Insect
JUL 15, 2020
Tiny Cameras: Viewing The World Through an Insect
Researchers have sought to develop cameras that ‘ride’ on the backs of insects, giving us an opportunity to ...
AUG 05, 2020
Genetics & Genomics
Bullock's & Baltimore Orioles May Mix, But They Won't Merge
AUG 05, 2020
Bullock's & Baltimore Orioles May Mix, But They Won't Merge
Researchers have data that can finally settle a long controversy in the birding world.
Loading Comments...