The colorful West Indian flamingo, locally, fillymingo, is the National bird of the Bahamas. Once sought after and nearly exterminated for their striking plumage, the species now enjoys protection. In the first half of the 20th century, as few as 10,000 birds survived, today more than 60,000 make the Bahamas their permanent nesting home. Flamingos feed on alkaline flats, filtering small crustaceans, diatoms and salt marsh fly larvae from the water and marl bottom. They lay one egg in a nest built of mud, and rear the hatchling on secretions of blood and other nutrients.

Flamingo nest and chick