WASHINGTON — (The video above is from September 2021)
The Smithsonian's National Zoo and Conservation Biology Institute is in mourning after the zoo's oldest flamingo, Betty, was found dead in her habitat near the end of January.
Betty was 67 years old when she died. She was the oldest Caribbean flamingo in the North American population.
The zoo says the median life expectancy for Caribbean flamingos is 26 years when in human care. Workers say Betty was in "remarkably good health" leading up to her death. A pathology report will give a closer look into how she died.
According to the zoo, Betty hatched in the wild in 1954 before arriving at the Smithsonian's National Zoo in 1976.
"For 46 years, Betty served as an amazing animal ambassador for generations of animal keepers, scientists and visitors," zoo officials said online. "We are grateful for all she taught us about flamingo biology, behavior and breeding. Our Zoo family misses her dearly."
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