In winter, a huge flock of Asians openbill storks (Anastomus oscitans) has become peculiar scenery of Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanical Garden (XTBG) since 2012. The beautiful wetlands within the garden are ideal habitats for the birds. The storks add attraction of the garden to visitors.
The Asian openbill is a large wading bird of stork family and is distributed in the Indian subcontinent and Southeast Asia. The bird is greyish white in color with glossy black wings. It has a forked black tail with purple or greenish sheen.
Asian openbills serve as effective indicators of the ecological health of wetlands. They are also vital components of wetland ecosystems in that they establish significant links in food webs and nutrient cycles.
Asian openbills are largely unthreatened, however several threats exist which can potentially cause their populations to decline. Invasive weed species can choke wetlands, resulting in reduced water flow and drying of wetland habitat.
According to the IUCN standard, it is Least Concern in the Redlist category and criteria.
Come and watch the birds at Flower Garden of XTBG!