Roseate Spoonbill and Wood Stork size comparison

Roseate Spoonbill in a lagoon

Roseate Spoonbill in a lagoon – Nikon D200, handheld, f6.3, 1/750, ISO 250, Nikkor 80-400mm VR at 400mm, natural light

Roseate Spoonbills are large wading birds with distinctive pink plumage, long spoon-shaped bills, bald heads and brilliant red eyes. Their length is about 32 inches, wing span 50 inches and they weigh about 3.3 pounds. When you are up close to them; as I was when I photographed the Spoonbill above, they seem rather large.

Wood Stork walking near a lagoonWood Stork walking near a lagoon – Nikon D200, handheld, f6.3, 1/1000, ISO 160, Nikkor 80-400mm VR at 400mm, natural light

Wood Storks are about 40 inches in length, have a wingspan of 61 inches and weigh in at 5.3 pounds. Wood Storks are also distinctive with white plumage, bald heads and long bills that look like wood. The Stork above has not yet acquired full adult plumage, when it does its neck will be featherless, dark and have a scaly appearance. When they are close you get the impression of their large size.

Wood Stork and Roseate Spoonbill size comparisonWood Stork and Roseate Spoonbill size comparison – Nikon D200, handheld, f6.3, 1/750, ISO 200, Nikkor 80-400mm VR at 360mm, natural light

This photo shows a Roseate Spoonbill and Wood Stork on the shoreline of a tidal lagoon at Fort De Soto County Park in Florida and it shows how the Wood Stork can dwarf the Roseate Spoonbill in height.

I find both species fascinating, prehistoric looking and unique.


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About Mia McPherson

I am a nature lover, wildlife watcher and a bird photographer. I first become serious about bird photography when I moved to Florida in 2004 and it wasn’t long before I was hooked (addicted is more like it). My move to the Salt Lake area of Utah was a great opportunity to continue observing their behavior and to pursue my passion for photographing birds.


  1. I appreciate your comments Bob, Laurence, Maria, Wally, Sherry, Eric, Charlotte and sally!

  2. They are amazing looking. Nice to be able to see them like this.

  3. I have yet to see either species! They are both really cool birds, excellent photos, Mia.

  4. never got any spoonbill, almost never present in my area,
    but a birdwatcher friend have already seen it a couple of years ago…
    I m very happy for you, you have got somes good shoots with it ! well play mia

  5. Wow I never would have guessed there was THAT much size difference. Those spoonbills are so absolutely lovely!

  6. Superb photos, of course! A couple of my favorite targets. Hope to be able to get images near this quality some day.

  7. Great depiction of scale between these two birds. I saw the Wood Stork too in Florida, but since I didn’t see the Roseate Spoonbill, so I had no means of understanding their comparison in size. Thanks!

  8. Geez those Wood Storks are big…

    Great shots of these bald beauties Mia.

  9. Wow, the difference of sizes is outstanding. Nice one Mia.

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