The Pink Flamingos of The Camargue in France
Did you know that Pink Flamingos are native to southern France? We didn’t either until reading about the wild flocks that come to stay in Camargue National Park. We were going to be in the area and figured we had to check it out. It turned out to be a highlight of our trip to Provence.
The Camargue National Park is made up of brackish marshland that runs along the Mediterranean coast just South of Marseille. The land serves as home to many wild pink flamingos, wild white horses and loads of other wildlife.
The easiest way to see the flamingos (and other animals) is to head to the Parc Ornithologique. Their team of scientists works to ensure the wild birds return here each year for mating and breeding.
Our visit put us up close to these magnificent birds. The park is set up with hiking paths and boardwalks that go all around the ponds, each of which was packed with flamingos.
Your tickets are good for all day. We easily spent just over an hour here. Every time we thought the kids were done a flamingo would do something cool and our kids would ask to stay longer. Even the Little Little was thrilled. He kept signing “bird” in baby sign language over and over.
There are so many flamingos to watch you will be mesmerized. They spent a lot of time eating and looking out for predators.
The flamingos are pink from the algae they eat. The pinker they are, the healthier they are.
So many flamingos. The walking paths let you get right up to the water without being too close to the birds.
Every pond we walked around had droves of birds feeding or just hanging out as far as we could see.
One of the most fascinating things was seeing them fly since it is something that you rarely see in zoos since the wings are typically clipped. These birds are so clumsy when they fly. They also expose the bright pink of their under wings when they fly.
Our boys, who love a good adventure. loved the viewing areas that were hiding in the grass. This was the perfect place to watch the birds.
There are also several blinds that you can watch from. This allows the birds to be a bit more natural than when you watch from the shore.
In addition to the flamingos there are lots of other bird species and other animals to find. The boys were great wildlife spotters.
The Big Little spotted this large rodent, a Coypu (also called a Nutria) swimming in the water. There are sign boards around helping you identify what you are seeing.
The Middle Little also spotted a Coypu, although his spotting turned out to be right on the path! We got a nice up-close view.
If you are in the area this is a wonderful experience and was completely worth the drive to the area. If the weather was a bit better we would have loved to have a picnic on one of the tables here. Around dusk we were told that many of the nocturnal animals start to come out and can be spotted. On our drive out of the park we spotted the wild horses but didn’t stop since the kids were tired.