Page 5 - PGA Community News- November '23
P. 5

November 2023                                                            November 2023                                                  PGA C.A.N.!, Page 5
      Northern Notes

      Roseate Spoonbill – Nature’s                         spoonbills have unique                            outdoors again! Find a park or preserve and see if you
                                                                                                             Take advantage of the cooler weather and explore the
                                                           Up close, roseate
      (Other) Brilliant Pink Bird                        coloring on their heads.                          can spot a bowl of roseate spoonbills. Enjoy!
                                                         While young, they have                               NPDES tip: Storms occur all year round. Make sure your
      By Katie Roundtree,                                light-colored feathers                            yards and trees are trimmed neatly to avoid flying debris
      Director of Finance and                            covering their heads and                          during a storm. Dispose of your trimmings and clippings
      Administration, Northern                           light pink plumage. As                            properly. Do not put them into storm drains or lakes!
      Palm Beach County                                  they age, the feathers
      Improvement District                               on their head thin out,
         Roseate spoonbills                              with only the blue-green                                  Reminder From
      are  striking  pink  birds                         to yellow-green head
      that inhabit our marshes                           showing, and their plumage gets darker. Their reddish eyes
      and preserves in South                             are in stark contrast to their head coloring, making them quite   Palm Beach Gardens
      Florida. They are shorter                          a unique specimen. You can estimate the age of a roseate
      and smaller than the more                          spoonbill then by determining if they have feathers on their   Police Department
      infamous  flamingo,  but                           head and by how vibrant their feathers are.
      their plumage is just as striking and easy to spot from afar.      We are fortunate to see them still since they were   Adopt These Habits To
      While they may be small in stature, they have a wingspan   hunted almost to extinction in the late 1800s for their
      that is almost twice as wide as they are tall.     gorgeous plumage used to decorate hats and fans.     Prevent Vehicle Burglaries
         Roseate spoonbills are highly social. They feed with   Thankfully, they received legal protection in the 1940s,
      each other and with other wading birds. They also nest   and their population has recovered.             • Please lock your vehicle doors every
      in colonies and fly in flocks. They are found with other      Roseate  spoonbills  are  the  only  spoonbill  species   time – even for a quick stop or at home.
      spoonbills in a group called appropriately a “bowl.”   native to the United States. Other species are found in     • Never leave items of any kind inside
         But what makes them pink? Spoonbills feed on small   Africa, Asia, Australia and Europe. However, no other
      fish, insects and crustaceans (invertebrates). Crustaceans   spoonbill species has the distinctive pink coloring as the   your vehicle. Hiding items doesn’t work!
      are  packed  with  carotenoids,  fat-soluble  pigments  that   roseate spoonbill.                        • At a minimum, if you must leave
      constitute reds, oranges, and yellows. Invertebrates                                                   items, place them in your trunk.
      compile these pigments by eating aquatic vegetation,                                                     • Cell phone/iPod power cords, GPS
      which uses beta-carotenoids to conduct photosynthesis.                                                 holders and other key sets act as neon
      Then,  as  spoonbills  eat these  crustaceans,  they  ingest                                           signs.
      their  stockpiled  carotenoids. As  the  birds  digest  their
      prey, these pigments are transferred into fat stores under                                               • Park in well-lit areas, stay alert
      the skin. These reserves feed into the feathers, primarily                                             and call in any suspicious activities to
      along the bird’s back, wings and rump.                                                                 the police department nonemergency
         As to their distinctive beak, spoonbills develop a                                                  number: 799-4445.
      flat, spoon-shaped bill shortly after hatching. Spoonbill
      hatchlings have a straight beak for the first few days of
      their life. The spoon shape grows as the chick develops.
      Spoonbills forage by sweeping their open bills back and
      forth under the water (think of a metal detector). Their
      bills have nerves that can feel when prey enters their bill
      and triggers it to shut when it comes in contact with food.
      It’s a very efficient way to forage.

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                                                                                              County’s first open heart surgery
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                                                                                                                 877.346.1842 to speak to
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             and beating stronger                                                                     Your Community Hospital

             every day.                                                                             3360 Burns Road, Palm Beach Gardens
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