Three glossy ibises (Plegadis falcinellus) were discovered in South Korea for the first time in history. The National Institute of Biological Resources under the Ministry of Environment announced Sunday that three glossy ibises, which are known to inhabit warm regions of Southeast Asia and Africa, were found in Hangyeong-myeon, Jeju City on April 20.
Included in the family of black-faced spoonbills and the order of Ciconiiformes, glossy ibises are around 55 to 63 centimeters long, and both male and female have reddish-brown bodies. They usually live in wetlands or swamps in temperate climate regions in Southeast Asia, South Asia, South Europe, Africa and Central America.
“Climate change may have expanded the area of distribution of glossy ibises even to Korea, but it is also possible that they have just strayed during their migration due to worsening weather conditions,” said Yoo Jeong-seon, head of Animal Resources Division. “Continuous monitoring is required.” Glossy ibises had never been found in Korea until April 20, but they have been spotted as “stray birds” (vagrant birds) in Japan and Hong Kong according to records.
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