Family Ibises, Spoonbills (Threskiornithidae)

Least Concern

White Ibis (Eudocimus albus)


Taxonomy

French: Ibis blanc German: Schneesichler Spanish: Corocoro blanco
Other common names: American White Ibis
Taxonomy:

Scolopax alba

Linnaeus

, 1758,

America = Carolina ex Catesby

.

Closely related to E. ruber. Proposal to merge the two into a single species on basis of close morphological and ecological similarities and natural hybridization in zone of overlap in Venezuela (where more than 40 mixed pairs recorded)#R; another view is that they may simply be colour morphs. Here, the case for lumping considered not proven. Two subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • E. a. albus (Linnaeus, 1758) – coast of W Mexico (including Baja California) and SE USA (North Carolina S to Florida, W to E & SE Texas) S to at least Costa Rica; Greater Antilles.
  • E. a. ramobustorum Patten, 2012 – coastal Panama, N Colombia and N Venezuela, extending inland in llanos of NE Colombia–SW Venezuela; SW Ecuador and extreme NW Peru.
  • Descriptive notes

    56–71 cm; male 810–1261 g, female 593–901 g. Distal third of four outer primaries black. During breeding, distal half of bill blackish. Non-breeding adult... read more

    Voice

    Main call is a nasal grunting “uhnk” or “uurr”, given both in flight and on the ground. At the... read more

    Habitat

    Wetlands with salt, brackish or fresh water; often in or near coast, especially frequenting... read more

    Food and feeding

    Mainly crustaceans, including crayfish (Cambarinae), fiddler crabs (Uca), mud crabs (Sesarma) and grass shrimps (... read more

    Breeding

    Spring in N of range, laying Mar–May; Jun–Oct, during rains, in Venezuela. Colonial, sometimes in aggregations of thousands of... read more

    Movements

    Essentially sedentary throughout range; post-breeding dispersal and seasonally some local movements... read more

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened (Least Concern). The global population is large; there are an estimated 209,000 birds in North America and the combined population of Central and... read more

    Recommended citation

    Matheu, E., del Hoyo, J., Christie, D.A., Kirwan, G.M., Garcia, E.F.J. & Boesman, P. (2020). White Ibis (Eudocimus albus). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from https://www.hbw.com/node/52773 on 23 February 2020).