Find out more about the only giant ibis skeleton owned by any museum in the world.

Giant ibis fact file

Specimen name

Giant ibis, Pseudibis gigantea

Found

Cambodia

Acquired

Donated to National Museums Scotland by Dr Hugh Wright of the University of East Anglia

Did you know?

The giant ibis is one of the most endangered birds in the world.

The specimen

The giant ibis, Pseudibis gigantea, is one of the most endangered birds in the world. There are only 345 birds left, all found on the Mekong River in Cambodia, where they are hunted for food. Giant ibises are also threatened by loss of wetlands, owing to drainage for agriculture and industry and the pollution of water.

This is the only giant ibis skeleton in any museum in the world.

Giant ibis skull.

The future of the giant ibis

This skeleton was donated to National Museums Scotland by Dr Hugh Wright of the University of East Anglia, who is studying the last of the giant ibises and trying to conserve them.

It is hoped that by studying this skeleton we will be able to show how the giant ibis is related to other ibises, especially the equally endangered white-shouldered ibis, P. davisoni, which also occurs in Cambodia.

Header image: Giant Ibis by Henrik Grönvold, via Wikimedia Commons.

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