Wattled Ibis (Threskiornis carunculata)

Wattled Ibis

[order] CICONIIFORMES | [family] Threskiornithidae | [latin] Threskiornis carunculata | [authority] Ruppell, 1837 | [UK] Wattled Ibis | [FR] Ibis caroncule | [DE] Klunkeribis | [ES] Ibis Carunculado | [NL] Lelibis


Monotypic species


Threskiornis is a genus of , wading birds of the family Threskiornithidae. They occur in the warmer parts of the Old World in southern Asia, Australasia and sub-Saharan Africa. They are colonial breeders, which build a stick nest in a tree or bush and lay 2-4 eggs. They occur in marshy wetlands and feed on various fish, frogs, crustaceans and insects. Adult Threskiornis ibises are typically 75cm long and have white body plumage. The bald head, neck and legs are black. The bill is thick and curved. Sexes are similar, but juveniles have whiter necks duller plumage. The Straw-necked Ibis differs from the other species in having dark upperparts, and is some times placed in the separate genus Carphibis (Jameson, 1835)as Carphibis spinicollis.

Physical charateristics

A large, dark ibis with white shoulder patches. Also eye is white. Thin wattle is hanging from the broad bill base. These two features, and no white line on cheek, distinguish this ibis from the close relative Hadada Ibis (Bostrychia hagedash). The average length is 60 cm.

Listen to the sound of Wattled Ibis

[audio:http://www.planetofbirds.com/MASTER/CICONIIFORMES/Threskiornithidae/sounds/Wattled Ibis.mp3]

Copyright remark: Most sounds derived from xeno-canto

wingspan min.: 0 cm wingspan max.: 0 cm
size min.: 65 cm size max.: 75 cm
incubation min.: 0 days incubation max.: 0 days
fledging min.: 0 days fledging max.: 0 days
broods: 1   eggs min.: 2  
      eggs max.: 3  


Africa : Ethiopia. Endemic to Ethiopia


The species is found in the highlands of Ethiopia between 1,500 to 4,100 m, where it inhabits river courses with rocky cliffs, and open country such as alpine moorland, swamps, cultivated land, plantations and open woodland (typically of olive, juniper and occasionally Eucalyptus stands).


When breeding colonially nests are placed on the eastern slopes of rocky cliffs (to obtain maximum morning sunlight for warmth) , or on bushes protruding from cliff-faces, often up to 3,000 m in altitude. When breeding in solitary pairs or small groups however, nests are more likely to be placed on the tops of trees or on ledges of buildings at lower elevations (1,800 to 2,000 m). In both cases the nest is a platform of branches and sticks. Clutch size 2-3 eggs.

Feeding habits

Its diet is unknown, but is most likely to consist of worms and insects (such as the adults and larvae of coprophagus beetles), as well as frogs and small mammals (young mice)

Video Wattled Ibis


copyright: J. del Hoyo


This species has a very large range, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the range size criterion (Extent of Occurrence <20,000 km2 combined with a declining or fluctuating range size, habitat extent/quality, or population size and a small number of locations or severe fragmentation). The population trend is not known, but the population is not believed to be decreasing sufficiently rapidly to approach the thresholds under the population trend criterion (>30% decline over ten years or three generations). The population size may be small, but it is not believed to approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population size criterion (<10,000 mature individuals with a continuing decline estimated to be >10% in ten years or three generations, or with a specified population structure). For these reasons the species is evaluated as Least Concern.
The species is currently threatened in the Bale Mountains National Park, Ethiopia, by overgrazing and tree-cutting, and is also potentially threatened by soil erosion, conversion to agriculture (farmers from the north of Ethopia have been relocated to the area) and extraction of groundwater (small scale extraction and irrigation has started and there are plans to expand the process). The long periods of recent warfare and drought in Ethiopia also raise concerns for this species due to its very restricted range.
Wattled Ibis status Least Concern


This species is sedentary but may make local altitudinal movements within its Ethiopian range

Distribution map

Wattled Ibis distribution range map

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