The official release of approximately 59 lesser flamingo juveniles into the wild and out of the care of SANCCOB took place earlier this week. As part of an initiative formed by Mike Bolhuis, two previous flamingo releases took place in preparation for this third release.

The initial release of flamingoes into their initial home at Kamfers Dam in Kimberley took place on May 8 2019, and the second took place on Monday, May 27. The most recent release was on Tuesday, May 28.

“It was an emotional scene and breathtaking event, when the birds reached the clay border around the dam, spread their wings and took flight for the very first time,” Bolhuis said to GoodThingsGuy.

A total of 170 flamingos were released across the three dates, with only two of the juveniles deciding not to venture into the wild. According to Bolhuis, flamingos are very fragile birds that require an immense amount of care.

There are still 400 other flamingoes still to be released, but their poor plumage conditions mean they are not yet ready for this. Their diet is also inhibiting their ability to develop and maintain proper plumage. This is detrimental to the birds as they are required to be waterproof to survive their natural environment.

Booth added that volunteers will monitor the area to ensure the birds are safe. Watch them take flight below:

Picture: Mike Bolhuis/Facebook

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