Sacred Ibis

Sacred Ibis

The Sacred Ibis is easily identified by its long, curved beak. This beak is perfectly suited for sifting through sludge and mud to find food. Males and females look very similar. They nest in large colonies of several hundred birds. The Sacred Ibis, an invasive species! Since the 90s a number of birds have begun to colonise Grand Lieu lake. This has led to an imbalance in the existing ecosystem. In fact, these birds take over the nesting sites of local fauna such as terns and black terns. Occasionally they

also attack these species’ offspring. In addition, as the Sacred Ibis is an opportunist omnivore,

its presence has an impact on the supply of food in the area. The vegetation on which they nest is affected by the acidity of its droppings and is ultimately destroyed. In 2007, the total number of Ibis in western France was estimated to be nearly 3,000 birds. Since 2008, a campaign to eradicate the species has been underway, launched by the Loire Atlantique authorities.

Did you know? Today there are no more Sacred Ibis in Egypt. However, they played a major part in Pharaonic culture: they portrayed Thoth, the god of wisdom and knowledge.

near threatened