Shoebill in Uganda, is a shoe like billed bird also known as whale head, whale-headed stork, or shoe-billed stork, is a very large stork-like bird. It derives its name from its enormous shoe-shaped bill. It has a somewhat stork-like overall form and has previously been classified with the storks in the order Ciconiiformes based on this morphology.
This amazing and beautiful creature resembles the prehistoric bird, it can actually be regarded to as the most strange bird in the world as very few people have taken the good study about them in the whole word.
Their population is disappearing every time and on a high pace. This bird has a large body, shoe like bill (also known as beak), huge wigs.
It is believed that this bird is associated with the now-extinct dinosaurs.
Shoebil stork live a daytime lifestyle, but sometimes they hunt at night when the moonlight is brighter for them to see the prey.
Shoebil is Grey in colour, lived in mostly swamps in different parts of the world. In Uganda, they can be found in swampy areas like Mabamba bay, Murchison falls national park, and other places.
The main predators to shoebill are Human beings and the crocodiles; however they will also be predated by the snakes. A shoebill can move/run on a speed of over 35-48kph.
They mainly feed on fish, Occasionally frogs, snakes (mostly small snakes) snails, rodents, and sometimes baby crocodiles.
When meeting a potential mate, shoebills clatter their bills to create a sound similar to a machine gun firing. It has also been compared to a hippopotamus mating call. This terrifying call is created by vibrating their throats and clapping their upper and lower bills together.
They are ambush predator, which often stands still for long periods, motionless like a statue, before launching a vicious attack to kill any prey that come within strike distance. The shoebill often feeds at night, and is also known to stand on floating vegetation to hunt their prey.
Shoebills have a declining population trend, due to habitat degradation and loss, illegal bird trade and disturbance by humans. Shoebills inhabit permanent swampy wetlands with seasonal flooded grasslands, where they prey on fish in shallow waters or use floating vegetation as fishing sites.
When you have a look at them, you always see as their named shoebill so unique that its foot-long bill that resembles a Dutch clog. Tan with brown splotches, it’s five inches wide and has sharp edges and a sharp hook on the end. Its specialized bill allows the shoebill to grab large prey, including lungfish, tilapia, eels, and snakes.
When you look into their eyes, they see innocent mate, and they surely communicate to the environment, people and respond to the human reactions.
Did you know that Shoebill are one of the most endangered bird species? And however much they are fearless to people, but not so much harmful, they do communicate to people. When you face the shoebill, scot down, they jump on to your head, messaging you and welcoming you to their habitats.
This 15 days birding adventure takes you to Uganda’s birding spots, where you will be able to sight a number of birds offering you the best and memorable experience. Visit Uganda, has over 1,078 bid species.