White Ibis ()

White Ibis

Distribution And Habitat

The White Ibis occurs from the Southeastern United States through northern South America including the West Indies (Raffaele and others 1998). It is described as a rare visitor and breeder in Puerto Rico (Oberle 2018). No records for this species are recorded for Vieques (Gemmill 2015). Before the early 2000s, it was a rare visitor but has since become established locally in the north coast near Arecibo and has expanded east and west along coastal wetlands. Habitat includes freshwater swamps, saltwater lagoons, and rice fields (Raffaele and others 1998). The atlas fieldwork yielded a total of six records within six hexagons or 1.2 percent of the 479 total hexagons (see map). Of the six hexagons where this species was found, breeding met the atlas definition of confirmed in 17 percent (one) of the hexagons, while the species was observed in 83 percent (five) of the hexagons but without evidence of breeding (see map).White Ibis distribution. The map shows the highest breeding code by hexagon and overlaying the ecological life zones in Puerto Rico. Note: percentages may not total 100 due to rounding.

White Ibis Distribution

Breeding Habits

Previously published reports indicate that the White Ibis breeds from April to September, and the nesting is colonial (Raffaele and others 1998). The nest is made of twigs and grasses 163White Ibis/Ibis Blancoand is usually constructed high in mangroves above water (Raffaele and others 1998). Atlas results show that this species breeds in June and within the subtropical moist forest life zone (see chart). Atlas results show that this species breeds in the subtropical moist forest life zone (100 percent of the hexagons) (see table and map).


The current global population trend of the White Ibis is described as stable, although some populations have unknown trends (Wetlands International 2012). This species is currently listed as a species of least concern by the IUCN (BirdLife International 2016). Locally, this species is not listed in any of the threatened categories of PRDNER and USFWS. In Puerto Rico, the White Ibis has a protected habitat in land of 25 percent or 6 km2 of the total area covered by the hexagons where evidence of breeding was found for this species (24 km2).