Flamingos in Lake Nakuru National Park
Flamingos in Lake Nakuru National Park: Flamingos are the most popular attraction in Lake Nakuru National Park; in fact the first thing you get to know about the park are the troops of pink flamingos that are always on the park’s lake Nakuru. Lake Nakuru found in the park hosts thousands and thousands of flamingos thorugh the year and sometimes in the year the flamingo population of the flamingos on the lake is over a million.
Most people travel to Lake Nakuru National Park yearly just to experience the pink creatures that have almost turned the lake Nakuru pink. Watching these birds feed, have their flock flying sprees, play in the water and interact with other birds and the surrounding are some of the moments bird lovers look forward to when they visit Lake Nakuru National Park.
The Flamingos in Lake Nakuru National Park, have always been there on lake Nakuru, there are barely any records of when the first group of flamingos was sighted on the lake, however since we know that flamingos are water birds and live wherever their food is available, we can assume they have been on lake Nakuru since time memorial because the lake flamingo food in abundance.
Flamongios feed mainly on blue-green algae, shrimp and a few water insects; Lake Nakuru in Lake Nakuru National Park being rich in blue-green is a perfect place for the flamingos to live. The lake is also surrounded by the prefect bushy woodland vegetation where the flamingos can easily make their nests. These factors and more make Lake Nakuru the place for these flamingos to live.
Flamingos are wading birds that are found across the world with a total of six flamingo species distributed across the world. Of the six species two species are endemic in Africa and they are ones you will find on Lake Nakuru in Lake Nakuru National Park.
Flamingos though wading birds they are strong swimmers but they rarely swim and they can fly pretty well between short distances.
Flamingos are famous for their bright pink feathers, S-shaped neck and stilt-like legs and the birds are also closely related to the grebes, herons, egrets, cranes and spoonbills.
Their generic name Phoenicopterus means “blood red-feathered” of course because of the flamingo’s feathers and the word flamingo comes from a Spanish word “flamengo” which means “flame” still because of the flamingos’ feathers that are pink in colour.
Africa has two flamingo species which are the lesser and greater flamingo and all these species can be found on Lake Nakuru in Lake Nakuru National Park. The greater flamingos are taller and darker in colour- their shade of pink well as the lesser flamingos are shorter and lighter in colour- their shade of pink.
Flamingos mate depending on the brightness of their pink, a male will be attracted to a female with a brighter pink than one with a dull pink. Researcher actually state that well-nourished flamingos are the ones with a bright pink colour and those that have a pale pink or very pale tending to white are malnourished flamingos.
When the flamingos mate the female lay an egg and the egg is hatched into a young one in 30 days; in the 30 days both the male and female take turns in incubating the egg. The young one is feed by both the male and female on crop milk that helps them develop and mature. The young ones are mature at 7 – 12 weeks however they don’t come to full maturity until 14 – 16 weeks.
Flamingo life is threatened by habitat loss, human predators that want the pink feathers for decorations and wildlife predators. When flamingo colonies are ever hit by danger from the surrounding or predators, it takes the birds many many years before they return to the habitat or even before the flamingo population takes long to grow again.
Flamingos are beautiful creatures and you can be sure to find both the greater and lesser flamingos in Lake Nakuru National Park on Lake Nakuru. These birds are on the lake all through the day, month and year; so any time you visit the park; you will definitely find the amazingly beautiful pink flamingos enjoying the shores of Lake Nakuru.