The crested ibis known as the Japanese crested ibis or Toki, variously written in kanji as 朱鷺, 鴇, 鵇, 鴾, or 桃花鳥, written in hanzi as 朱䴉 or 朱鷺, is a large, white-plumaged ibis of pine forests. Its head is bare, showing red skin, it has a dense crest of white plumes on the nape; this species is the only member of the genus Nipponia. They make their nests at the tops of trees on hills overlooking their habitat. Crested ibises eat frogs, small fish, small animals. At one time, the crested ibis was widespread in Japan, Korea and Russia, it has now disappeared from most of its former range. The last wild crested ibis in Japan died in October 2003, with the remaining wild population found only in Shaanxi province of China until reintroduction of captive bred birds back into Japan in 2008, they were thought to be extinct in China too, until 1981 when only seven ibises were seen in Shaanxi, China. Extensive captive breeding programs have been developed by China to conserve the species, they were put on the State Protection List in China.
For the past 23 years, China has bred and protected the species. In 2002, there were a total of 130 colonies in China. Northwest Shaanxi province's research center has a history of 26 crested ibis fledglings including artificial, natural incubation. On July 31, 2002, five out of seven crested ibis chicks hatched at an incubation center in northwest Shaanxi province; this was one of the latest records and highest record recorded of chicks that hatched. The parents of the chicks were chosen from 60 ibis pairs raised at that research center. Due to ongoing habitat loss, small population size, limited range, winter starvation and persecution in last century brought this endangered species to the brink of extinction; the crested ibis has been listed in Appendix I of the conservation treaty CITES. The London Zoo had crested ibises from 1872 until 1873. Outside China only Japan and South Korea keep this species. On September 25, 2008, the Sado Japanese Crested Ibis Preservation Center released 10 of the birds as part of its crested ibis restoration program, which aims to introduce 60 ibises into the wild by 2015.
This marks the first time the rare bird has returned to the Japanese wild since 1981. On April 23, 2012, it was confirmed that three crested ibis chicks had hatched on Sado Island in Niigata Prefecture, the first time chicks had hatched in the wild in Japan in 36 years. One of the baby chicks left its nest on 25 May. List of Special Places of Scenic Beauty, Special Historic Sites and Special Natural Monuments – the crested ibis is listed BirdLife species factsheet for Nipponia nippon Japanese crested ibis at www.biodic.go.jp Sibagu: Threskiornithidae of China Sibagu: Threskiornithidae of Japan "Nipponia nippon". Avibase. "Japanese crested ibis media". Internet Bird Collection. Crested ibis photo gallery at VIREO Interactive range map of Nipponia nippon at IUCN Red List maps Audio recordings of Crested ibis on Xeno-canto
The small bird genus Geronticus belongs to the ibis subfamily. Its name is derived from the Greek gérontos in reference to the bald head of these dark-plumaged birds. Like most ibises, they are gregarious long-legged wading birds with long down-curved bills; the two Geronticus species differ from other ibises in that they have unfeathered faces and heads, breed on cliffs rather than in trees, prefer arid habitats to the wetlands used by their relatives. Their food contains more terrestrial ones; this has contributed to their decline however, as they were much affected by indiscriminate pesticide spraying in the mid-to-late 20th century, leading to their disappearance from many regions. Geronticus perplexus is by far the oldest fossil assigned to the present genus, it is known only from a piece of distal right humerus, found at Sansan, France, in Middle Miocene rocks of the Serravallian faunal stage MN 6. It was considered to be a heron and placed in the genera Ardea and Proardea. More plesiomorphic than the living species, it seems to represent an ancient member of the Geronticus lineage, in line with the theory that most living ibis genera seem to have evolved before 15 million years ago.
Geronticus apelex is the direct ancestor of the southern bald ibis. Its remains were found in Early Pliocene deposits near Langebaanweg, South Africa, which date back about five million years. What may be an ancestral European form, Geronticus balcanicus, was found in a Late Pliocene deposit near Slivnitsa, Bulgaria, it is hitherto only known from one left and one right carpometacarpus piece which are identical to those of living bald ibises. Contemporaneous with these during the early MN18 faunal stage – about two mya – birds indistinguishable from the modern northern bald ibis inhabited at least Spain, if not the whole western Mediterranean region already. Thus, the extinct species may be the immediate ancestor of G. eremita, which would have originated at the western extent of its range. Some authors include the Bulgarian population in G. eremita, but most are more cautious. G. balcanicus may represent a lineage related but not ancestral to the northern bald ibis, which inhabited the inland regions northeastwards of the European Alpides and – like the immediate ancestor of G. eremita in this scenario – was isolated from the ancestors of G. calvus when gene flow across tropical Africa ceased.
Boev, Zlatozar: Presence of Bald Ibises in the Late Pliocene of Bulgaria. Geologica Balcanica 28: 45–52. Boev, Zlatozar:Additional Material of Geronticus balcanicus Boev, 1998, Precision of the Age of the Type Locality. Acta Zoologica Bulgarica 52: 53–58. Full text Brookes, Ian: The Chambers Dictionary. Chambers, Edinburgh. ISBN 0-550-10185-3 |del Hoyo, Josep. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. ISBN 84-87334-10-5 Mlíkovský, Jirí: Cenozoic Birds of the World. Ninox Press, Prague. ISBN 80-901105-3-8 PDF fulltext Sinclair, Ian. Struik, Cape Town ISBN 1-86872-721-1 Snow, David W. & Perrins, Christopher M.: The Birds of the Western Palearctic. Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-854099-X Geronticus, Systema Naturae 2000 Navigate: Taxon Index, Genus Level, G Bald Ibis by Adam Riley, Focusing on Wildlife
The green ibis known as the Cayenne ibis, is a wading bird in the ibis family Threskiornithidae. It is the only member of the genus Mesembrinibis; this is a resident breeder from Honduras through Nicaragua, Costa Rica and western Panama, South America to northern Argentina. It undertakes some local seasonal movements in the dry season; when he first described the green ibis in 1789, from a specimen collected in Cayenne, French Guiana, Johann Friedrich Gmelin gave it the scientific name Tantalus cayennensis, assigning it to the same genus as a number of Old World ibis species. In 1930, James Lee Peters moved it to the monotypic genus Mesembrinibis. DNA–DNA hybridization studies show that the species falls squarely into the New World ibis clade, with its closest relatives being the sharp-tailed ibis, the American white ibis and the buff-necked ibis; the genus name Mesembrinibis is a combination of the Greek word mesēmbrinos, meaning "southern" and ibis. The specific epithet cayennensis means "of Cayenne or French Guiana", refers to the collection site for the type specimen.
The green ibis is a medium-sized ibis, with short legs and a long, decurved bill. It ranges from 700 to 890 g in mass; the sexes, which are identical in plumage, overlap somewhat in measurements, though the largest birds are male. Breeding adults have glossy greenish-black bodies, pale green legs and bill, grey bare facial skin patches. Juveniles are much duller, but can be distinguished from the similar glossy ibis by their bulkier shape, shorter legs and broader wings; this species, like other ibises, flies with neck outstretched. Its flight is heavy, with fewer jerkier wingbeats than its relatives. If seen in good light, the green ibis is distinctively dark, unlikely to be confused with any other ibis. In poor light, however, it might be confused with the glossy ibis; the green ibis is found from Costa Rica south to northern Paraguay. However, there have been sightings from as far north as Honduras, fossil records show the species occurred as far north as Kansas in the United States, it is found in a variety of forested wetland habitats swamps and along the edges of rivers and lakes, at altitudes up to 500 m.
The green ibis is crepuscular. Less gregarious than its relatives, it is seen alone or in pairs; when it does forage in mixed-species flocks, it tends to remain on the fringes among other green ibises. It perches in trees. Like other ibises, it eats fish and other water creatures, as well as insects, its nest is a flimsy platform of twigs built high in a tree. It has been recorded harassing sunbitterns nesting in the same tree, it has a hollow, accelerating call, most heard at dawn and dusk. Transcribed as kro kro or koro koro, the call is described as "mellow"; because of its huge range and large population, the green ibis is rated as a species of least concern by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature. It is at least hunted by residents of Central and South American countries; the green ibis is the type host of a species of bird louse, Plegadiphalus cayennensis. Jobling, James A.. The Helm Dictionary of Scientific Names. London, United Kingdom: Christopher Helm. ISBN 978-1-4081-2501-4.
Matheu, E.. "Family Threskiornithidae". In del Hoyo, Josep. Handbook of Birds of the World, Volume 1: Ostrich to Ducks. Barcelona, Spain: Lynx Edicions. ISBN 84-87334-10-5. Green ibis photo gallery at VIREO "Green ibis media". Internet Bird Collection. Audio recordings of green ibis on Xeno-canto
Eudocimus is a genus of ibises, wading birds of the family Threskiornithidae. They occur in the warmer parts of the New World with representatives from the southern United States south through Central America, the West Indies, South America. There are just two species in this genus, The two species hybridise, are sometimes considered conspecific; the genus Eudocimus appears to be most related to Plegadis, the latter distinguished anatomically by the conformation of the tarsometatarsus. The fossil record is poor, but the Early Miocene fossil species Plegadis paganus has some intermediate features, it has two foramina in the intertrochlear groove of its distal tarsometatarsus, as do Plegadis in contrast to the single foramen of Eudocimus and many other bird species. The derived nature of this species indicates ibises belonging to Eudocimus were in existence at this time. A 2010 study of mitochondrial DNA of the spoonbills by Chesser and colleagues, which included E. ruber, Nipponia nippon and Threskiornis aethiopicus found that E. ruber was an early offshoot and not related to a clade containing the spoonbills and Old World ibises.
Remains similar to E. albus have been found in Middle Pliocene deposits of the Bone Valley formation in central Florida, Lower Pliocene deposits of the Yorktown Formation at Lee Creek in North Carolina. Two species, one living and one extinct, have been recovered from the Talara Tar Seeps in northern coastal Peru. Eudocimus peruvianus was described from a tarsometatarsus that differed from E. albus, whose remains were found there. Remains of neither species are common in the beds; the tar seeps have been dated at 13,900 years old. The American white ibis is still found in Peru; these birds are found in marshy wetlands near coasts. They build stick nests in trees or bushes over water, a typical clutch is two to five eggs. Eudocimus ibises are monogamous and colonial nesting in mixed colonies with other wading species. Adults are 56–61 cm long with an 85–95 cm wingspan, they have long curved pink legs and bare red faces. The plumage is all-white or all-scarlet, except for the black wing-tips, which are visible in flight.
Juveniles are brown with white underparts and duller bare parts. Eudocimus ibises feed by probing with their downcurved beaks, their diet consists of fish, frogs and insects. They fly with neck and legs outstretched in long, loose lines on their way to or from the night-time roosts. A guide to the birds of Costa Rica by F Gary Stiles and Alexander F Skutch, ISBN 0-8014-9600-4 Birds of Venezuela by Steven L Hilty, ISBN 0-7136-6418-5
The giant ibis, the only species in the monotypic genus Thaumatibis, is a wading bird of the ibis family, Threskiornithidae. It is confined to northern Cambodia, with a few birds surviving in extreme southern Laos and a recent sighting in Yok Đôn National Park, Vietnam; the giant ibis is a lowland bird that occurs in marshes, lakes, wide rivers, flooded plains and semi-open forests as well as pools and seasonal water-meadows in denser deciduous forest. It is found in lowlands. One bird was collected in a Malay paddyfield; the giant ibis was believed to breed in southeastern Thailand and northern Cambodia, southern Laos and southern Vietnam. It was still common in the Mekong Delta until the 1920s but is now depleted, with a small remnant population breeding in Cambodia, southern Laos and in Vietnam; this is, by far, the largest of the world's ibises. Adults are 102–106 cm long, with an upright standing height of up to 100 cm and are estimated to weigh about 4.2 kg. Among standard measurements, the wing chord is 52.3–57 cm, the tail is 30 cm, the tarsus is 11 cm and the culmen is 20.8–23.4 cm.
The adults have overall dark grayish-brown plumage with upper neck. There are dark bands across the back of the head and shoulder area and the pale silvery-grey wing tips have black crossbars; the beak is yellowish-brown, the legs are orange, the eyes are dark red. Juveniles have short black feathers on the back of the head down to the neck, shorter bills and brown eyes, it has a loud, ringing call repeated around dawn or dusk, a-leurk a-leurk. Little is known of the giant ibis's life history, it eats aquatic invertebrates, eels and small amphibians and reptiles. Insects such as locusts and cicadas are eaten when abundant and seeds supplement the diet. Outside of the breeding season and mole-crickets appear to be the most significant prey types for giant ibises, they forage in muddy substrate in shallow waters, though can feed at all depths in seasonal forest pools. Feeding flocks may consist of a breeding pair or small family group and have been observed mixing with black ibises. Next to nothing is known of its breeding behaviour, but it nests in trees, with a possible preference for Dipterocarpus trees.
Nests are located at least 4 km from human habitations, although the species is not shy around or fearful of humans unless persistently harassed or hunted. Females lay two eggs at around June to September. Earthworms taken from their mounds in wet grasslands appears to be an important food source for nesting ibises of this species. In general, the species is residential but can wander for food or in response to disturbances; the giant ibis is territorial and may remain with a family group throughout the year. However, in the dry season, when they are not nesting, groups of up to seven individuals, sometimes unrelated, have been observed feeding together; the giant ibis is considered to be Critically Endangered on the IUCN Red List. The primary causes seem to be drainage of wetlands for cultivation and the epidemic clear-cutting of forest for rubber, wood pulp and teak plantations in south-east Asia. Habitats may face ravaging due to local human warfare. Increasing human populations in Cambodia have in turn lead to disturbance and further lowland deforestation.
The ibis may be hunted for meat by people and eggs may be predated by the Asian palm civet and the yellow-throated marten, with the species unable to withstand sustained predation. A reduction in seasonal pools in forest made by now depleted populations of megafauna, may negatively effect them. Local droughts related to global climate change, have appeared to have further compromised the breeding habitat and behaviour of the species; some conservation efforts have been undertaken, including protecting nests by the installation of metal belts that prevent predators from accessing them, but the protection of ideal habitat and the increasing human populations in Cambodia continues to be a vexing challenge. Increasing ecotourism in the region and education to local people is required for the species to recover from the brink of extinction; the current population is estimated at 100 pairs, with a total population of fewer than 500 individuals. However these figures may be optimistic. In 2018 the IUCN stated.
Hancock & Kushan, Storks and Spoonbills of the World. Princeton University Press, ISBN 978-0-12-322730-0. BirdLife species factsheet. ARKive pics and videos
The Pelecaniformes are an order of medium-sized and large waterbirds found worldwide. As traditionally—but erroneously—defined, they encompass all birds that have feet with all four toes webbed. Hence, they were also known by such names as totipalmates or steganopodes. Most have a bare throat patch, the nostrils have evolved into dysfunctional slits, forcing them to breathe through their mouths, they feed on squid, or similar marine life. Nesting is colonial; the young are altricial, hatching from the egg naked in most. They lack a brood patch; the Fregatidae, Phalacrocoracidae and Phaethontidae were traditionally placed in the Pelecaniformes, but molecular and morphological studies indicate they are not such close relatives. They have been placed in their own orders and Phaethontiformes, respectively. Classically, bird relationships were based on morphological characteristics; the Pelecaniformes were traditionally—but erroneously—defined as birds that have feet with all four toes webbed, as opposed to all other birds with webbed feet where only three of four were webbed.
Hence, they were also known by such names as totipalmates or steganopodes. The group included frigatebirds, cormorants and tropicbirds. Sibley and Ahlquist's landmark DNA-DNA hybridisation studies led to them placing the families traditionally contained within the Pelecaniformes together with the grebes, cormorants and spoonbills, New World vultures, penguins, albatrosses and loons together as a subgroup within a expanded order Ciconiiformes, a radical move which by now has been all but rejected: their "Ciconiiformes" assembled all early advanced land- and seabirds for which their research technique delivered insufficient phylogenetic resolution. Morphological study has suggested pelicans are sister to a gannet-cormorant clade, yet genetic analysis groups them with the hamerkop and shoebill, though the exact relationship between the three is unclear. Mounting evidence pointed to the shoebill as a close relative of pelicans; this included microscopic analysis of eggshell structure by Konstantin Mikhailov in 1995, who found that the shells of pelecaniform eggs were covered in a thick microglobular material.
Reviewing genetic evidence to date and colleagues surmised that pelicans were sister to the shoebill with the hamerkop as the next earlier offshoot. Ericson and colleagues sampled five nuclear genes in a 2006 study spanning the breadth of bird lineages, came up with pelicans and hamerkop in a clade. Hackett and colleagues sampled 32 kilobases of nuclear DNA and recovered shoebill and hamerkop as sister taxa, pelicans sister to them, herons and ibises as sister groups to each other with this heron and ibis group a sister to the pelican/shoebill/hamerkop clade; the current International Ornithological Committee classification has pelicans grouped with the shoebill, hamerkop and spoonbills, herons and bitterns. Recent research suggests that the similarities between the Pelecaniformes as traditionally defined are the result of convergent evolution rather than common descent, that the group is paraphyletic. All families in the traditional or revised Pelecaniformes except the Phalacrocoracidae have only a few handfuls of species at most, but many were more numerous in the Early Neogene.
Fossil genera and species are discussed in genus accounts. This is "Sula" ronzoni from Early Oligocene rocks at Ronzon, believed to be a sea-duck and is an ancestral Pelecaniform; the pelecaniform lineages appear to have originated around the end of the Cretaceous. Monophyletic or not, they appear to belong to a close-knit group of "higher waterbirds" which includes groups such as penguins and Procellariiformes. Quite a lot of fossil bones from around the Cretaceous–Paleogene boundary cannot be placed with any of these orders and rather combine traits of several of them; this is, of course, only to be expected, if the theory that most if not all of these "higher waterbird" lineages originated around that time is correct. Of those basal taxa, the following show some similarities to the traditional Pelecaniformes: Lonchodytes Torotix Tytthostonyx Cladornis "Liptornis"—a nomen dubiumThe proposed Elopterygidae—supposedly a family of Cretaceous Pelecaniformes—are neither monophyletic nor does Elopteryx appear to be a modern bird.
Pelecaniformes portal Bourdon, Estelle. J. Vertebr. Paleontol. 25: 157–170. DOI: 10.1671/0272-46340252.0. CO. Journal für Ornithologie 144: 157–175. HTML abstract Mortimer, Michael: The Theropod Database: Phylogeny of taxa. Retrieved 2013-MAR-02. Tree of Life: Pelecaniformes
Northern bald ibis
The northern bald ibis, hermit ibis, or waldrapp is a migratory bird found in barren, semi-desert or rocky habitats close to running water. This 70–80 cm glossy black ibis, unlike many members of the ibis family, is non-wading, has an unfeathered red face and head, a long, curved red bill, it breeds colonially on coastal or mountain cliff ledges, where it lays two to three eggs in a stick nest, feeds on lizards and other small animals. The northern bald ibis was once widespread across the Middle East, northern Africa and central Europe, with a fossil record dating back at least 1.8 million years. It disappeared from Europe over 300 years ago, although reintroduction programs in the region are underway. There are believed to be about 500 wild birds remaining in southern Morocco, fewer than 10 in Syria, where it was rediscovered in 2002. To combat this ebb in numbers, recent reintroduction programs have been instituted internationally, with a semi-wild breeding colony in Turkey, as well as sites in Austria and northern Morocco.
These programs helped to downlist the northern bald ibis from Critically Endangered to Endangered on the IUCN Red List in 2018. The reasons for the species' long-term decline are unclear, but hunting, loss of foraging habitat, pesticide poisoning have been implicated in the rapid loss of colonies in recent decades; the ibises are long-legged wading birds with long down-curved bills. Along with the spoonbills they form one subfamily within the family Threskiornithidae; the northern bald ibis' closest relative, the only other member of the genus, is the southern bald ibis, G. calvus, of southern Africa. The two Geronticus species differ from other ibises in that they have unfeathered faces and heads, breed on cliffs rather than in trees, prefer arid habitats to the wetlands used by their relatives; the northern bald ibis was described and illustrated by Swiss naturalist Conrad Gesner in his Historiae animalium in 1555, given the binomial name Upupa eremita by Carl Linnaeus in his 1758 Systema Naturae.
It was moved to its current genus by the German herpetologist Johann Georg Wagler in 1832. This species has an interesting history of description and rediscovery; the species split into two distinct populations at least 400 years ago and, since the two populations have been diverging morphologically and genetically. One consistent difference between the eastern and western birds is a single mutation in the cytochrome b gene of their mitochondrial DNA. Fossils of the northern bald ibis have been found at a Holocene site in southern France, in middle Pleistocene strata in Sicily, in Pliocene-Pleistocene boundary deposits on the Mediterranean coast of Spain. What appears to be an ancestral form, Geronticus balcanicus, was found in the late Pliocene of Bulgaria, further illustrating the early widespread presence of this genus in Europe, suggesting that Geronticus eremita may have originated in south-eastern Europe or the Middle East; the genus name, Geronticus, is derived from the Ancient Greek γέρων, meaning old man and refers to the bald head of the aged.
Eremita is Late Latin for hermit, from the Greek ἐρημία, meaning desert, refers to the arid habitats inhabited by this species. The alternative common name waldrapp is German for forest crow, the equivalent of the Latin Corvo sylvatico of Gesner, adapted as Corvus sylvaticus by Linnaeus; the northern bald ibis is a large, glossy black bird, 70–80 cm long with a 125–135 cm wingspan and an average weight of 1.0–1.3 kg. The plumage is black, with bronze-green and violet iridescence, there is a wispy ruff on the bird's hind neck; the face and head are dull red and unfeathered, the long, curved bill and the legs are red. In flight, this bird has powerful and flexible wing beats, it gives guttural hrump and high, hoarse hyoh calls at its breeding colonies, but is otherwise silent. The sexes are similar in plumage, although males are larger than females, and, as with other ibises that breed in colonies, have longer bills; the longer-billed males are more successful in attracting a mate. The downy chick has uniformly pale brown plumage, the fledged juvenile resembles the adult except that it has a dark head, light grey legs, a pale bill.
The unfeathered areas of the young bird's head and neck become red as it matures. Moroccan birds have a longer bill than Turkish birds of the same sex. If the eastern and western populations are considered to be separable subspecies, it is unclear which should be considered to be the nominate form, since the first description of this species was based on a now-extinct population from Switzerland, of unknown race; the northern bald ibis is distinguished from its close relative, the southern bald ibis of Southern Africa, by the southern species' whitish face. The northern bald can be confused with the dark-plumaged glossy ibis, which overlaps its range, but it is larger and stockier than that species. In flight, when the bill and face colouration may not be visible, the bald ibis' less rounded wings and shorter neck give it a different profile from glossy ibis, its short legs mean that its feet do not project beyond the tail, unlike those of the glossy ibis. Unlike many other ibises, which nest in trees and feed in wetlands, the northern bald ibis breeds on undisturbed cliff ledges, forages for food in irregularly cultivated, grazed dry areas such as semi-arid steppes, fallow fields.