The American white ibis (Eudocimus albus) is a species of bird in the ibis family. It is found from Virginia via the Gulf Coast of the United States south through most of the coastal New World tropics. This particular ibis is a medium-sized bird with an overall white plumage, bright red-orange down-curved bill and long legs, and black wing tips that are usually only visible in flight. Males are larger and have longer bills than females.
Their diet consists primarily of small aquatic prey, such as insects and small fishes. Crayfish are its preferred food in most regions, but it can adjust its diet according to the habitat and prey abundance. Its main foraging behavior is probing with its beak at the bottom of shallow water to feel for and capture its prey. It does not see the prey.
A field study late in the Florida nesting season revealed that on an average day, adult American white ibis spent 10.25 hours looking for food, 0.75 hours flying, 13 hours resting, roosting, and attending to their nests
During the breeding season, the American white ibis gathers in huge colonies near water. Pairs are predominantly monogamous and both parents care for the young.
Human pollution has affected the behavior of the American white ibis via an increase in the concentrations of methylmercury, which is released into the environment from untreated waste. Exposure to methylmercury alters the hormone levels of American white ibis, affecting their mating and nesting behavior and leading to lower reproduction rates.
Sophia Feeney is a student of Booker High School and attends the VPA and AICE program. She is a Sophomore who specializes in digital painting and design with a compatible joy for painting and illustrating on paper. In her free time, she enjoys writing stories, sketching out new ideas, and horseback riding. Sophia is always learning and improving her skill. She hopes to attend the Ringling School of Art after she graduates. The inspiration behind this project was simply taking note of the surroundings and visualizing ideas for this project. The building this painting is next to was a big inspiration for the background. With intriguing patterns and colors, the building fit perfectly for the eye catching White Ibis. Because the Ibis is already an interesting bird, the pose was kept simple to show off the beauty of the bird. I painted the American White Ibis which took about eight hours in total.