La Terre des Origines
The shoebill lives in Central Africa, in the Lakes and Marshes to the East.
With its round little eyes and its vaguely ironic air when it stares at you, completely motionless, this large wader bird, of a pearl-grey colour, is rather related to herons and pelicans than to storks, with which it shares the silhouette, however.
It is its beak which is especially remarkable : in the shape of a 25cm-long and 10cm-wide shoe, hence its so evocative local name : “ abou marqoub ”, Father of the Shoe!
The Shoebill Stork is so secretive that it was discovered by European scientists only in 1850, at the time of expeditions into the immense marshy areas of Africa, to the sources of the Nile.
Living in wetlands, it feeds not only on fish, but also on snakes, frogs and young varanes or crocodiles, which it swallows whole by dredging the mud with its extraordinary beak.
It is a bird that is seldom seen in captivity : Pairi Daiza was the first park in the world to have succeeded, in 2008, to hatch two chicks : Abou and Marqoub.
In Pairi Daiza, you can observe :
The shoebill in image
This world's activitiesSave time ! Your season pass online as of 64€
Three islands with a total area of - 7000 m2, modelled on Nosy Komba - a small island north of Madagascar. This is the universe of our prosimians. More info
Discover one of the most impressive projects in the history of Pari Daiza and meet our great apes More info
The red river hog
This is also called the “Red River Hog” : it is indeed a member of the family Suidae, i.e. pigs. It has a beautiful russet-red coat and it likes water, therefore being a good swimmer. More info