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World's oldest flamingo dies at 83

By Rebecca Walezak,

The world’s oldest flamingo died in an Australian zoo at age 83.

The flamingo, which was a resident at Adelaide Zoo in Sydney, Australia, was known to the staff as "Greater," after his species. He was put down on Thursday due to his old age.

According to Agence France-Presse, the flamingo first arrived at the zoo in 1933 and was the last flamingo of its kind left in Australia.

"Although this is an extremely sad loss for us all, it was the right thing to do," Zoos South Australia chief executive Elaine Bensted told the AFP. "There was no additional medical treatment that would have improved Greater's quality of life."

No bird in the wild would be able to live as long as Greater did because they face predators every day and lack medical attention. The standard lifespan for a flamingo is about 25 years, but when in captivity, they can live for decades.

BBC News reports that zoo officials plan to keep a close eye on another flamingo, Chilly. The Chilean flamingo, who is 65, was a close companion of Greater and is believed to be the last remaining of its species in Australia.

At this time, the Adelaide Zoo is considering holding a memorial for Greater.

image: Wikimedia Commons

A greater flamingo (not 83 year-old Greater) in Camargue, France.

 

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