I had the opportunity to see some Anhinga’s the past few weeks not far from where I live and get pictures of them with their distinctive webbed feet, colorful white and black feathers and method of eating fish. The first picture shows the Anhinga standing on some pipes of a storm water drain waiting for a meal to drift by. You can see their impressive webbed feet which makes them such good swimmers. They can also fly long distances without flapping their wings. The female bird has a brownish neck whereas the male bird in the 2nd and 3rd pictures has a black neck. The Anhinga spears their prey with their bill and swallows them whole. The 2nd and 3rd pictures shows the bird maneuvering a fish it just caught, about 6-7 inches long, into it’s mouth. Anhinga’s are often seen standing with their wings outstretched in the sun because their wings become saturated with water and do not have the oil glands like other birds to keep their feathers dry. I have a another post in this blog showing an Anhinga in this kind of spread wing display. Visit the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, All About Birds to learn more about Anhinga’s. There is an audio clip where you can listen to their sounds.
Click on a picture to get a larger image