Afghan Voice Agency(AVA)_Monitoring, Abou, the female shoebill, recently arrived at Exmoor Zoo in Devon, England, as part of an international breeding program to save her species.
The unique-looking bird is just one of 11 shoebills in the world currently in captivity – and now the only one in the U.K, Newsweek reported.
Shoebills are monogamous and normally only rear one youngster, so combined with threats arising from climate change, they are a species said to be “massively under threat.”
Abou, 14 years old, was born and bred inside Pairi Daiza Zoo in Belgium and has been moved to the U.K. to wait while the breeding program produces a male bird, so the pair can be matched and produce much-needed offspring, Newsweek reported.
Also known as whale heads, shoebills are at home in the swamps and marsh lands of East Africa, where they hunt fish and small invertebrates.