Name the Scarlet Ibis

The Terrestrial and Education team at Boatswain’s Beach is inviting the public to help them name the two new Scarlet Ibis in the Caribbean Aviary; an exotic and colourful home to friendly birds from all over the Caribbean.

The team is developing the only aviary collection in the Americas (possibly the world) dedicated to showcasing the birds of Cayman and the islands of the Caribbean, a press release explains.

There are three species of Ibis resident to the islands of the Caribbean: the White Ibis and Glossy Ibis are found in Cuba and Hispaniola and occasionally in Jamaica and Cayman; the Scarlet Ibis is native to Trinidad and is that country’s national bird. They can also be found occasionally in Tobago and Grenada.

Ibis are wetland birds, living in mangrove swamps in the tropics. They feed on fiddler and mangrove crabs, fish and frogs. Ibis can be very sensitive to disturbance, and their behaviour, presence or absence, can be seen as indications of habitat changes and quality.

The release adds that the aviary’s two popular birds Tom and Jerry, so named by last year’s summer camp kids, are two mischievous teenage White Ibis that have been bringing fun and laughter to aviary visitors for almost a year.

According to Geddes Hislop, Curator, Terrestrial Exhibits and Education Programmes, ‘Our Ibis are being trained by aviary staff to interact with the public and fly around the Aviary to display their beauty and grace. Tom and Jerry represent the West Caribbean while the Scarlet Ibis represent the East Caribbean. Thus far the Scarlet Ibis are awaiting their own fun names and this is where we would like to ask members of the public to get involved in the process.’

Guests are invited to visit the aviary while enjoying all the other great features of Boatswain’s Beach to meet the two new additions and to join the naming competition. All interested guests may fill out a form in the aviary with their name suggestions.

On 30 April a winner will be chosen. The lucky winner will receive a prize and recognition in the paper and on the website for their contributions to the park.

For more information email [email protected].

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