A fat frog or toad must surely be a prized meal for a wader like a White Ibis. Unless, of course, it’s too big to eat.
The other day at Gemini Springs I noticed an ibis being pursued by others in a flock of about 20 birds. The ibis had something large in its bill.
The bird managed to get away from its hungry friends and began manipulating the prey, but it was a struggle. At first I thought the ibis had a large crab, but it looks like the prey was some type of frog or toad, puffed up as a defense mechanism. The puffing process may have saved it. I watched the hapless ibis work on the amphibian for a few minutes, but the ibis eventually gave up and dropped its prey.
Later the flock of ibis moved to a shallow part of the spring run to feed and preen. Hopefully the hungry ibis was able to find more suitable prey here.
*Naturally the ibis did not intent to literally inhale its prey. But inhale rhymes with fail… get it?