What do flamingo eat?

Flamingos are omnivorous birds that feed on a variety of aquatic organisms. Based on the provided search results, their diet primarily consists of:
  • Algae (blue-green and red algae, diatoms)125
  • Small invertebrates (larval and adult insects, crustaceans like shrimp, crabs, mollusks)1245
  • Small fishes1
  • Seeds5
  • Brine shrimp25
  • Fly larvae45
The specific diet can vary between different flamingo species. For example:
  • Greater and Chilean flamingos feed mostly on invertebrates like brine flies, shrimp, and mollusks from the bottom of water bodies4.
  • Lesser flamingos primarily consume alkaliphilic cyanobacteria like Limnospira fusiformis5.
  • American flamingos eat algae, aquatic invertebrates, mollusks, seeds, shrimp, and fly larvae5.
Flamingos obtain their distinctive pink coloration from the carotenoid pigments, particularly canthaxanthin, present in their diet of algae and invertebrates25. Their unique feeding behavior involves stirring up the water with their feet to dislodge food items, and then using their specialized beaks to filter out the edible matter from mud and water5. 1245
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