A family of storks: wading birds with distinctively long legs, bills and necks. Can easily be spotted hunting in shallow water of flying relatively low around lakes and riverbanks.
- The tallest flying bird in South America.
- The adult is 120 to 140cm long and can weigh 4.3 to 9kg. Some can grow to 1.53m tall.
- The beak, which is 25 to 35 cm, is black and broad and slightly upturned. It ends in a sharp point.
- Plumage is mostly white, but the head and upper neck are featherless and black, with a featherless red stretchable pouch at the base – hence the name, which means swollen neck.
- Diet is mostly fish, molluscs, insects, and amphibians.
- They can eat carrion and dead fish which improves water quality.
- They hunt using tactile sensation rather than vision.
- The stork will pull its victim from the water, then throw its head back to swallow the prey.
- Breeding pairs flap their wings in a courtship ritual.
- They are not highly vocal. Instead they clatter their beaks to communicate.
Where & how to spot in Manu:
- Jabiru are active during the day and are usually to be seen in groups.
- Nests are usually some 15 to 30m above ground in isolated, tall trees.
- See them flying over rivers quite frequently.
- Best place to spot them is walking on river banks in the early morning or late afternoon.