Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:


The great flamingo round-up


Credit: Wildlife Conservation Society

Credit: Wildlife Conservation Society

Scientists corral, band and release over 300 threatened flamingoes for research

With South America’s Mars-like Altiplano region serving as a surreal back-drop, a group of scientists from the Bronx Zoo-based Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) recently braved frigid temperatures, high winds, and altitudes of over 11,000 feet to fit bands on 300 threatened James’ flamingoes chicks. Working in Eduardo Avaroa Faunal Reserve in southern Bolivia, the banding effort is part of a multi-nation study on flamingo movements and population dynamics.

Collecting hundreds of birds at a time proved challenging for the scientists. They built a large funnel and a "flamingo corral" with wooden stakes and plastic sheeting, then rounded up a large group of chicks, which gather in flocks of several hundred birds called creches.

"Two groups set out, one on each side of the group of chicks, fanned out, then herded them into the funnel," said Dr. Felicity Arengo, WCS assistant director of Latin America Programs. "There was some chaos and running around while we were herding the birds, but once they were in the pen they calmed down."

After the chicks were rounded up, each was weighed, measured, and fitted with a plastic numbered tag that will allow scientists to identify individuals, before being released. Blood samples were taken from 70 of the largest chicks to record baseline data on their health.

For the past three years, WCS has participated in the banding project, fitting over 500 flamingoes with bands. Both James’ and Andean flamingoes are considered vulnerable with total populations estimated at 64,000 and 34,000 respectively. Since 1997, WCS has worked with local partners in flamingo research and conservation, because habitat is becoming more and more impacted by mining and other human activities.

The windswept Altiplano region that spans Bolivia, Peru, Chile and Argentina is recognized as one of the world’s most inhospitable regions, with extreme dry weather, blistering sunshine and caustic salt lakes dotting the landscape. For flamingoes however, the lakes are rich in microscopic food, while the surrounding wetlands make a perfect breeding ground.

"Most people think of flamingoes as delicate birds that live on tropical beaches and palm trees," said Arengo. "In reality these are extremely tough animals adapted to some of the most rugged conditions on earth."

ADDITIONAL CONTACT: Stephen Sautner-U.S. (718-220-3682;
John Delaney-U.S. (718-220-3275;

Stephen Sautner | EurekAlert!
Further information:

More articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation:

nachricht Invasive Insects Cost the World Billions Per Year
04.10.2016 | University of Adelaide

nachricht Malaysia's unique freshwater mussels in danger
27.09.2016 | The University of Nottingham Malaysia Campus

All articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: New 3-D wiring technique brings scalable quantum computers closer to reality

Researchers from the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo led the development of a new extensible wiring technique capable of controlling superconducting quantum bits, representing a significant step towards to the realization of a scalable quantum computer.

"The quantum socket is a wiring method that uses three-dimensional wires based on spring-loaded pins to address individual qubits," said Jeremy Béjanin, a PhD...

Im Focus: Scientists develop a semiconductor nanocomposite material that moves in response to light

In a paper in Scientific Reports, a research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute describes a novel light-activated phenomenon that could become the basis for applications as diverse as microscopic robotic grippers and more efficient solar cells.

A research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has developed a revolutionary, light-activated semiconductor nanocomposite material that can be used...

Im Focus: Diamonds aren't forever: Sandia, Harvard team create first quantum computer bridge

By forcefully embedding two silicon atoms in a diamond matrix, Sandia researchers have demonstrated for the first time on a single chip all the components needed to create a quantum bridge to link quantum computers together.

"People have already built small quantum computers," says Sandia researcher Ryan Camacho. "Maybe the first useful one won't be a single giant quantum computer...

Im Focus: New Products - Highlights of COMPAMED 2016

COMPAMED has become the leading international marketplace for suppliers of medical manufacturing. The trade fair, which takes place every November and is co-located to MEDICA in Dusseldorf, has been steadily growing over the past years and shows that medical technology remains a rapidly growing market.

In 2016, the joint pavilion by the IVAM Microtechnology Network, the Product Market “High-tech for Medical Devices”, will be located in Hall 8a again and will...

Im Focus: Ultra-thin ferroelectric material for next-generation electronics

'Ferroelectric' materials can switch between different states of electrical polarization in response to an external electric field. This flexibility means they show promise for many applications, for example in electronic devices and computer memory. Current ferroelectric materials are highly valued for their thermal and chemical stability and rapid electro-mechanical responses, but creating a material that is scalable down to the tiny sizes needed for technologies like silicon-based semiconductors (Si-based CMOS) has proven challenging.

Now, Hiroshi Funakubo and co-workers at the Tokyo Institute of Technology, in collaboration with researchers across Japan, have conducted experiments to...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>



Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

Agricultural Trade Developments and Potentials in Central Asia and the South Caucasus

14.10.2016 | Event News

World Health Summit – Day Three: A Call to Action

12.10.2016 | Event News

Latest News

Resolving the mystery of preeclampsia

21.10.2016 | Health and Medicine

Stanford researchers create new special-purpose computer that may someday save us billions

21.10.2016 | Information Technology

From ancient fossils to future cars

21.10.2016 | Materials Sciences

More VideoLinks >>>