The Shoebill, also known as Whalehead, is a very large stork-like bird. It derives its name from its massive shoe-shaped bill.
The adult bird is:
115–150 cm (4-5 feet) tall
100–140 cm (40–55 in) long
230–260 cm (9-10 feet) across the wings
4 to 7 kg (8.8-15.5 lbs) in weight
The Shoebill lives in tropical east Africa in large swamps from Sudan to Zambia. They feed in muddy waters, preying on fish, frogs, reptiles such as baby crocodiles, and small mammals. They nest on the ground and lay 2 eggs.
This species was only classified in the 19th century when some skins were brought to Europe. It was not until years later that live specimens reached the scientific community. However, the bird was known to both ancient Egyptians and Arabs. There are Egyptian images depicting the Shoebill, while the Arabs referred to the bird as abu markub, which means one with a shoe, a reference to the bird’s distinctive bill.
Fact Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shoebill
Other photos you might like:
The Shoebill and the Duck
Don’t Mess with the Shoebill
Another weird-looking stork - the Hammerhead
1 (via Avi_Abrams)