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WE are very proud to write the following highly respected art groups have featured on the date indicated by each group's name our "Wood Stork - Nest Builder" image;
1 - Wild Birds Of The World: 03/21/2017
2 - Poetic Poultry: 03/21/2017
3 - Birds In Focus: 03/21/2017
4 - Coastal Water Birds - Shore Birds: 03/24/2017
5 - KINGDOM Animalia: 03/28/2017
Deb captured this gorgeous Wood Stork as it landed just above its nest on a tree located at the Alligator Farm bird rookery, which is located in Saint Augustine, Florida. We visited this incredible place on Wednesday & Thursday, March 15th & 16th, 2017 to photograph birds. This was our first visit to the Alligator Farm but it most certainly will not be our last. Fact is there were so many birds nest building to lay eggs or had already built nests and were sitting on the eggs our minds were shocked and pleasantly amazed at the numbers. Now for some scientific information about this species.
The Wood Stork (Mycteria americana) is a large American wading bird in the stork family Ciconiidae. It was formerly called the "wood ibis", though it is not an ibis. As of June 26, 2014 it is classified as a threatened species by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service.
The adult is a large bird which stands 83 to 115 cm (33 to 45 in) tall and spans 140 to 180 cm (55 to 71 in) across the wings. Males typically weigh 2.5 to 3.3 kg (5.5 to 7.3 lb), with a mean weight of 2.7 kg (6.0 lb); females weigh 2.0 to 2.8 kg (4.4 to 6.2 lb), with a mean weight of 2.42 kg (5.3 lb). Another mean estimated weight for the species was 2.64 kg (5.8 lb). However, exceptionally large males are sometimes found and these can weigh up to 4.5 kg (9.9 lb). It appears all white on the ground, with blackish-gray legs and pink feet. In flight, the trailing edge of the wings is black. The head is dark brown with a bald, black face, and the thick down-curved bill is dusky yellow. Juvenile birds are a duller version of the adult, generally browner on the neck, and with a paler bill. The bare head and the long bill, which can measure up to 25.5 cm (10.0 in) in length, render the wood stork distinctive from other large waders in its range. The standard scientific measurements of the wood stork are as follows: the wing is 42 to 49 cm (17 to 19 in), the culmen is 19 to 25 cm (7.5 to 9.8 in) and the tarsus is 17.5 to 21.5 cm (6.9 to 8.5 in).
The wood stork is the only stork that presently breeds in North America. In the United States there is a small breeding population in Florida, Georgia, and South Carolina, along with a recently discovered rookery in southeastern North Carolina. After a successful three-decade conservation effort resulting in an increased population in the southeastern United States, the wood stork was removed from the endangered species list and upgraded to threatened on June 26, 2014. Similarly, in the state of Santa Catarina, Brazil, its decline seems to have been reversed: after an absence between the late 1960s and the mid-1990s, the species is now again regularly encountered there, in particular in the Tubar River region. It is likely that the Paran River region's wetlands served as a stronghold of the species, from where it is now re-colonizing some of its former haunts. Globally, it is considered a species of Least Concern by the IUCN due to its large range.
The wood stork is a broad-winged soaring bird that flies with its neck outstretched and legs extended. It forages usually where lowering water levels concentrate fish in open wetlands; it also frequents paddy fields. Walking slowly and steadily in shallow water up to its belly, it seeks prey, which, like that of most of its relatives, consists of fish, frogs and large insects. It catches fish by holding its bill open in the water until a fish is detected.
In the United States, the wood stork favors cypress trees in marshes, swamps, or (less often) among mangroves and nearby habitat.
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"Art Excites Our Souls"
Bill and Deb Hayes
March 17th, 2017
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