By Olga Gertcyk
27 October 2015
Compass failure: aiming for the Caspian Sea, the elegant birds arrive instead on the Tom River in Kemerovo region, and in the Altai Mountains.
Local resident Pavel Shaposhnikov, 29, was in a boat with friends along the Tom river on 25 October when he spotted flamingos. 'I'm shocked,' he posted. 'We've seen flamingos on the Tom river.' Seven of the birds were spotted. Zoologist Nikolai Skalon confirmed the flamingos on their video were the real thing, saying they must have strayed from their flocks and become lost.
'The northernmost nesting of flamingos is central Kazakhstan. And these birds are listed in the Red Book of Russia. This is due to the fact that sometimes they mistakenly fly to the Kuzbass [Kemerovo region], even though they ought to be flying in the opposite direction towards the Caspian Sea. It could be they go astray during the weather changes, in the early autumn storms. Sometimes even pelicans fly to us, but mostly we can see here the flamingos.'