Lesser Flamingo

Flamant nain - Pairi Daiza

Numbering several million birds

This is the smallest of the five species of flamingo, but it is the most abundant, numbering several million birds.

It is in particular to be seen in the alkaline lakes of East Africa and Namibia (where a colony of more than a million birds in the Etosha basin has been counted). Its principal place of reproduction is Lake Natron, in Tanzania.

The Lesser Flamingo feeds primarily on plankton, on diatoms and on a cyanobacterium, the spiruline, which lives in that alkaline water. It is its diet that gives the bird its pink plumage.

Inside its beak, there’s a filter consisting of 10,000 microscopic strips which enable the bird to retain its tiny food mixed in the mud from the shoals of the lakes and lagoons of its habitat.

Like all flamingos, it builds a nest with mud from the banks, in the form of a truncated cone, with a hollow receptacle at the top where a single egg is laid.

While its reproduction is not rare in the wild, in captivity it’s difficult, probably because of its very specialized dietary habits and also due to the fact that it doesn’t breed every year, even in the wild.

Flamant nain - Pairi Daiza
Identity card

A "near threatened" species

  • Name: Lesser Flamingo
  • Latin name: Phoeniconaias minor
  • Origin: East Africa, Madagascar, Namibia
  • IUCN status: Near threatened
  • Cites: Appendix II

Sponsor the Lesser Flamingos

Sponsorship amounts are exclusively for the Pairi Daiza Foundation for projects for the conservation and protection of threatened species and for improving their living conditions in Pairi Daiza.

Je parraine les Flamants nains