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Stork, Yellow-billed

Identify and index birds in Southern Africa

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francoisd
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Stork, Yellow-billed

Unread postby francoisd » Tue Jan 25, 2005 12:50 pm

Yellow-billed Stork (Mycteria ibis)

Image Image

These birds are found in Africa South of the Sahara desert, frequenting rivers, dams, floodplains and marshes.

Other names:
Afrikaans: Nimmersat
French: Tantale ibis, Tantale africain
German: Nimmersat
Dutch: Afrikaanse Nimmerzat

Facts:
Height: 95–105 cm
Habitat:Sub-Saharan Africa
Sexual maturity: 3 years
Brooding: 30 days
Number of eggs per clutch: 2-4
Food: Primarily frogs and fish
Life expectancy: Up to 19 years in captivity

Habitat:
Aquatic habitats, including shallow lakes, mud flats, coastal lagoons and meadows.

Diet:
Feeds on crustaceans, small fish, frogs, insects and worms.

Physical Description:
Adult male yellow-billed storks have a smooth forehead and their face is orangey-red. Their bills are long and thick at the base. It is also slightly curved at the tip and bright yellow, hence their name. Their necks are also long and slender and grayish white. The rest of their body including their back, belly and breast is solid white with a small hint of pink on the tips of their feathers. Their tail and wing quills are black. The yellow-billed storks legs vary from a dark red to a light pink color and are long and skinny. Its hard to believe that their legs can support their plump, round bodies. The female storks are alot like the male storks, however the females are smaller.

Special Adaptations:
The yellow-billed storks have remarkable adaptation. These birds are know to have the quickest muscular reflex of the neck, allowing almost all food to be caught in the water. Their long, narrow, curve tipped bills allow them only to catch small prey such as small fish, frogs, insects and worms passing by in the water. Yellow-billed storks are intelligent birds. These birds created a technique to help them catch more prey in the water. They typically use one foot to stir up the water or mud which disturbs and flushes out the prey. Then they submerge their heads quickly in the water snapping their bills on small prey. Yellow-billed storks bills are great fishing tools.

Reproductive Behavior:
The female yellow-billed storks approaches the courtship among the male yellow-billed storks. Together they build a bulky nest made of sticks and the male chooses where the nest is to be built. The two storks work vigorously together to build a nest and can do so within 7-10 days. These nests are usually built high in trees away from predators. The storks breed almost year round. At breeding colonies the storks make a hissing sound. Incubation period can last up to 30 days and between 2-3 eggs are laid on alternate days. The juveniles are ready to fly after about 2 months.

Much of the above information was taken from the WhoZoo website.

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Unread postby richardharris » Mon Jan 30, 2006 9:35 pm


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Unread postby Elsa » Mon Jan 30, 2006 9:43 pm

Thanks RH,
I just love the colours especially the tinge of pink in the plumage.
We saw a few of them at Sunset dam last year and I couldn't believe how lovely they were and that was not in the breeding season either.
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Unread postby richardharris » Tue Jan 31, 2006 11:39 am

In December 2004 there were large numbers around Olifants and Letaba. Still a few in June 2005 (including this one). Large group (20 or so) also on the Luvuvhu.

Richard

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Unread postby francoisd » Mon Feb 27, 2006 1:50 pm

From SASOL 3
Juvenile is brownish above and washed with grey-brown below, becoming whiter with age

Does anyone perhaps have a photo of a juvenile Yellow-billed Stork? If so please post it here for all to see.

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Unread postby DuQues » Mon Feb 27, 2006 2:42 pm

No, but here are two examples of breeding season yellowbill's:
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(Sorry, he needs a bit of a wash...)
Arriving currently: The photos from our trip! Overhere! :yaya:

Feel free to use any of these additional letters to correct the spelling of words found in the above post: a-e-t-n-d-i-o-s-m-l-u-y-h-c

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Unread postby Shidzidzii » Tue Feb 28, 2006 9:10 am

A very handsome stork and I just love that pink tinge in the white feathers.

I always knew the Afrikaans name of Nimmersat and I see German and Dutch use it too. I kind of translated it to "never tired" nimmer = never and sat=tired or finished. Often the common names reveal something of a bird that's why it is of interest to know them.

Does anybody have a beter explanation of the root of the afrikaans name ?

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Unread postby gwendolen » Tue Feb 28, 2006 9:58 am

mikev wrote:Does anybody have a beter explanation of the root of the afrikaans name ?

No, funny name for a bird. :lol: In Dutch a stork is actually called ooievaar.

Nimmersat, perhaps because they always seem to be foraging for food?

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Unread postby Jose » Tue Feb 28, 2006 11:55 am

mikev wrote:<...>Does anybody have a beter explanation of the root of the afrikaans name ?

Nimmersat means never full, always hungry. It is a reference to their feeding behaviour.
Like you say nimmer means never. Sat/zat comes from the Latin word satur, meaning full (of food). Compare saturate.

Also look at the French name. Tantale = Tantalus, a son of Zeus who was invited by the gods to share their food. But he ticked them off, and for that they punished him with eternal hunger and thirst. And so he spent the rest of his days as a nimmersat. :wink:

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Unread postby Shidzidzii » Thu Mar 02, 2006 8:32 am

Thank you Jose .

In similar vein Secretary bird is not named for the pen quill behind the ear a la secretary but rather from the Arabic "SEKARETEUR" meaning hunter bird .

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Unread postby WELSH_ASH » Thu Mar 02, 2006 11:58 am

mikev wrote:In similar vein Secretary bird is not named for the pen quill behind the ear a la secretary but rather from the Arabic "SEKARETEUR" meaning hunter bird .


Really? Thanks, this is Interesting. I was fooled into believing it was named after the quil!!! :redface:

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Unread postby Jay » Sat Mar 25, 2006 6:57 pm

Image

another yellow bill taken at Sunset Dam, (where else :wink: )

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Unread postby DinkyBird » Mon Sep 25, 2006 9:23 pm

Image
Sunset Dam - Sept 2006
Sawubona
Dalene

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Unread postby wildtuinman » Thu Apr 26, 2007 7:09 am

Shingwedzi causeway

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Unread postby cybeR@NGER » Fri May 09, 2008 3:43 pm

On top of a tree next to Sweni Hide, (Oct'06):

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