Marabou stork chicks
Marabous are also known as exotic storks. They occur naturally in Africa, where they live on the savannahs and eat both fresh meat and carrion. They aren’t the most attractive birds, with their bald heads, scrubby head feathers, hanging throat sac and yellowish bills, but they are among the largest birds in the world. Their wingspan of 2.60 metres allows them to share the title of ‘largest flying bird’ with the Andes condor of South America.
In the Rotterdam zoo, the marabous have been housed for the past two years in a very large, naturally landscaped aviary which is home to eight marabous: two that had come from elsewhere in the zoo, and six from a Spanish zoo. Also sharing the aviary are vultures and other African bird species. In the winter the marabous are moved to an indoor enclosure, while the vultures remain outside.