Black-winged Stilt, Adelaide Zoo
One of the benefits of visiting zoos like the Adelaide Zoo here in South Australia is to observe many bird species up close. Most zoos have collections of birds and Adelaide Zoo is no exception. There is a large collection of easily viewed aviaries decorated to reflect the different habitats present in Australia – from the deserts through to rainforests. In most cases the observer can get to within a metre or two of the birds which helps in learning the finer details of plumage.
The zoo also has two walk through aviaries where you can get even closer to the birds. These are also excellent for bird photography. One of the species I photographed on my last visit was the Black-winged Stilt shown on the photos above and below. This was a challenge – even with a flash on my camera. It was lurking in the pools of the rainforest aviary.
Black-winged stilts are water birds found throughout most of Australia where suitable habitat exists, except, of course, for the drier inland regions. They can occur in small groups of only four or five through to large concentrations in the hundreds, depending on the conditions.