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Greater Flamingo (Phoenicopterus roseus)
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The Greater Flamingos (Phoenicopterus roseus) that visit the lagoon of Lefkada, are one of the six species of flamingos. They can also be found in the wetlands of the coastal countries of the Mediterranean, Africa, the Indian subcontinent and the Middle East. On average they have a length of 120-140cm and they can reach a height of up to 187 cm. Like all flamingos, it feeds mainly on shrimp, algae and aquatic plants. Flamingos start to migrate to Lefkada – predominantly from Africa – from the beginning of October, though in recent years they have been migrating later in November due to the heat, as the lagoon has faced drought. They stay on the island for about five months, depending on the weather. The flamingos prefer a rainier winter, so the lagoon stays well-stocked rather than drying out. The flamingos, after they leave their nest, live all together, creating huge colonies. Despite the fact that there may be gathered of more than 30,000 birds, the young flamingos are only fed by their parents, who distinguish them from the squeaking of their voices.
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