Fishermen with frigate birds around them in the lagoon on the backside of Ambergris Caye, beautiful scene
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Tuesday December 15, 2020

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These beautiful feathers belong to the Magnificent frigatebird! It’s a side of the bird many rarely get to see.
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Welcome to Ambergris Today, a new and dynamic newspaper for Ambergris Caye. We have chosen the name Ambergris Today because it will always keep our island at heart and promote it with honor and dignity. The heartbeat of Ambergris Today shall be the welfare of Ambergris Caye and San Pedro Town, and through our veins shall flow the lifeblood of our community.
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Fishermen with frigate birds around them in the lagoon on the backside of Ambergris Caye, beautiful scene

It’s a blessing to wake up in paradise every day.

The magnificent frigatebird almost never spends time on land, in fact its legs are so tiny it makes walking on land nearly impossible. Instead, what we are more likely to see is the angular silhouette and deep forked tail soaring over the coastline.

I love frigatebirds because they just seem to go against all norms. They are one of few seabirds with sexual dimorphism - meaning the adult males and females have a different appearance, they are a seabird that cannot drink saltwater - they possess no salt glands like other seabirds have so can only drink freshwater, and they are a seabird that possess no waterproofing - so they cannot get wet or they will likely drown! In addition they get cool nicknames like “pirates of the sky” and “man o’ war” for one of their hunting tactics called kleptoparasitism, which is harassing other birds until they drop or regurgitate their food, at which point the frigatebird swoops in and snatches up the treat in mid air.

I hope when you look up to the sky when on Belize’s coastlines, you see the magnificent frigatebirds with a new appreciation and think of all their amazing characteristics that make them unique.

Top photograph by Ambergris Today, 2nd and third photos and text by ACES

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