9 Birds that Look Like Flamingos (A to Z List with Pictures)

Birds that Look Like Flamingos

Examples Of Birds that Look Like Flamingos Include Great Blue Heron, Great Egret, Lesser Flamingo, Mute Swan, and Painted Stork.

There are quite a few birds that look the same as flamingos. In fact, when most people see a pink or red bird they may automatically assume it is a flamingo.

While there are some similarities, there are also key distinctions between these birds like eating habits and color. Let’s look at some of the most common birds that people mistake for flamingos.

Examples of Birds that Look Like Flamingos

1. Great Blue Heron

Scientific NameArdea herodias
Type of AnimalBird
RangeNorth America, as far north as Alaska and the southern Canadian

These birds are actually quite a bit larger than flamingos. They can grow to be up to four and a half feet tall with a six-foot wingspan. Great blue herons are mostly white with some grey on their wings and back. Their legs are long and thin like a flamingo’s but their neck is much shorter.

Like flamingos, great blue herons eat mostly shrimp, crabs, and small fish. They can often be seen wading in shallow water with their long neck extended looking for food.

Related Article: 25 Birds that Eat Snakes

2. Great Egret

Scientific NameArdea alba
Type of AnimalBird
RangeWest Indies or southern Central America

Great Egrets are white with black legs and a yellow bill. They can be found in wetlands across North and South America as well as in parts of Africa, Europe, and Asia. Great Egrets primarily eat fish but will also consume amphibians, reptiles, and small mammals.

The Great Egret is a member of the heron family and is one of the most widespread of all egrets. It has a wingspan of up to six feet and can be found in wetlands across North and South America, parts of Africa, Europe, and Asia. The Great Egret is mostly white with black legs and a yellow bill. It feeds primarily on fish but will also consume amphibians, reptiles, and small mammals.

The Great Egret nests in colonies of mixed species, often near herons, ibises, and other wading birds. The female lays three to five eggs in a nest made of sticks and twigs. Both parents help to incubate the eggs and care for the young.

3. Lesser Flamingo

Scientific NamePhoeniconaias minor
Type of AnimalBird
Range eastern and southern Africa

The lesser flamingo is the most widespread of all flamingo species. They are native to Africa, India, and the Middle East. These birds are also the smallest of all the flamingos, only reaching about 3 feet in height.

Like true flamingos, lesser flamingos have long legs and necks. They also have curved beaks that they use to filter food from the water. The plumage of lesser flamingos is what sets them apart from other birds.

While their feathers are pink, they are not as vibrant as those of true flamingos. Lesser flamingos also have white spots on their wings.

4. Mute Swan

Scientific NameCygnus olor
Type of AnimalBird
RangePacific Northwest and from New England south to Virginia

The Mute Swan is a large white bird with an orange beak and black legs. They are often mistaken for flamingos because of their size and coloration.

The biggest difference between Mute Swans and flamingos is their diet. Mute swans are herbivores that eat mostly aquatic plants. Flamingos, on the other hand, are filter feeders. This means they strain small organisms and algae from the water to eat.

Another key difference is that Mute Swans are not naturally pink or red. The coloration of a Mute Swan can range from all-white to all-black. Flamingos, on the other hand, get their distinct pink color from the beta carotene in the shrimp and other crustaceans they eat.

5. Painted Stork

Scientific NameMycteria leucocephala
Type of AnimalBird
Rangetropical Asia

The painted stork is a large wading bird with a long neck and bill. The bill is slightly curved and has a pinkish hue. The legs are also long and pink. The body of the painted stork is white with black patches. The wings are white with black tips.

The adult flamingo is much larger than the painted stork. The flamingo’s bill is also much more curved than the stork’s bill. In addition, the flamingo has black legs whereas the stork’s legs are pink.

6. Roseate Spoonbill

Scientific NamePlatalea ajaja
Type of AnimalBird
Rangethroughout the entire Gulf of Mexico coastline, south to Central America, South America, and the West Indies

The roseate spoonbill is a wading bird with a long, flat bill. It is most commonly found in the southeastern United States, Central America, and parts of South America. The spoonbill gets its name from its spoon-shaped bill which it uses to filter food out of the water.

The roseate spoonbill is mostly pink with white underparts. Its bill is black with a yellow base. Adults have a wingspan of about four feet and weigh three to five pounds.

7. Sandhill Crane

Scientific NameGrus canadensis
Type of AnimalBird
RangeNorth America

At first glance, a Sandhill Crane may look like a flamingo. After all, they are both tall birds with long necks. However, a closer look will reveal that these two birds are quite different. Sandhill Cranes are mostly gray with a red cap on their head. Their bill is also much thinner than a flamingo’s bill.

American flamingos are usually bright pink, but their color can range from pale pink to almost red. Their legs are long and thin and end in webbed feet with three toes. Their neck is S-shaped and they have a long, curved bill. Flamingos often stand on one leg, tucking the other leg up close to their body.

Related Article: 19 Birds that Look Like Cranes

8. Scarlet Ibis

Scientific NameEudocimus ruber
Type of AnimalBird
Rangenorthern South America southward along the coast of Brazil

The Scarlet Ibis is a common bird in South America and gets its name from its bright red feathers. Like flamingos, they have long legs and necks. They also have curved beaks that they use to snatch food out of the water.

However, there are some key differences between the two birds. For one, Scarlet Ibises do not eat the same type of food as flamingos. Flamingos primarily eat algae and other plants that they can filter out of the water. Scarlet Ibises, on the other hand, eat mostly insects.

Another difference is that Scarlet Ibis are not always red. While they are born with white feathers, they turn red as they get older. The reason for this change is still unknown.

Another key difference is that Scarlet Ibises do not live in the same type of habitat as flamingos. Flamingos prefer to live in saltwater lakes and marshes. Scarlet Ibises, on the other hand, prefer freshwater wetlands.

9. White Stork

Scientific NameCiconia ciconia
Type of AnimalBird
RangeAfrica from tropical Sub-Saharan Africa to as far south as South Africa, or on the Indian subcontinent

The White Stork is a large bird that can be found in parts of Europe and Africa. It has long legs and a long neck like a flamingo, but its body is white with black wings. It also doesn’t have the characteristic down-curved bill that most flamingos have.

The White Stork is a migratory bird, meaning that it spends part of the year in one place and part of the year in another. In the spring, it migrates north to its breeding grounds in Europe and Africa.

It typically nests in trees, but will also nest on buildings or other structures if there are no trees available. The female lays 3-5 eggs, which are incubated for about a month. Both parents help to raise the young.

The White Stork is an omnivorous bird, meaning that it eats both plants and animals. Its diet consists of insects, small mammals, reptiles, amphibians, and fish. It will also eat berries and other fruits, as well as seeds and grains.


There are many different types of birds that can be mistaken for flamingos. flamingos have a very distinct look with their long legs and pink feathers. While there are several similar-looking bird species, the easiest way to tell them apart is by their coloring and leg length.

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