The Bellagio on Las Vegas Strip Turns off Its Famed Fountain Show After a Rare Bird Lands in the Water

Bellagio Hotel fountains

Photo: miflippo/Depositphotos

The fountain show of the Bellagio Hotel & Casino, on Las Vegas Strip, attracts many visitors every day. But on Tuesday, March 5, this Las Vegas staple had to be stopped for a unique guest. A yellow-billed loon, a bird not usually found on the mainland of the U.S., landed in the fountain.

“We are happy to welcome the most exclusive guests,” wrote the hotel staff on Twitter. They then announced that the fountains had been paused and that they were working with state wildlife officials to rescue the bird, which had “found comfort on Las Vegas' own Lake Bellagio.”

It is extremely rare to see a yellow-billed loon in the Las Vegas area, as it normally makes its home in the Arctic and along the Pacific mainland. The International Union for the Conservation of Nature has listed it as “vulnerable” meaning it could be at risk of endangerment in the future, while National Park Service considers them to be one of the ten rarest birds that breed on the mainland of the United States, adding that approximately 20-25% of the global population occurs seasonally in Alaska.

“It’s an odd thing that it would come to the Bellagio fountains, where there are so many people,” Kurt Buzard, of the Henderson Bird Viewing Preserve, told FOX5 News. According to him, the specimen is a younger bird that might have gotten lost while attempting to migrate up the coast, where most yellow-billed loons travel. “It’s really off-course here. Very unusual to see a bird like that here.”

At first, officials from the Nevada Department of Wildlife figured it was best to not agitate the bird, giving it a day to sort it out on its own. But when Wednesday came, they worried about the lack of food the loon may face if it stayed there. After figuring out what was best, they captured the bird. Once they made sure it was free of injuries and in good health, it was relocated to the Wetlands, an area about 5 miles from the Strip, where it has access plenty of food and water.

“A juvenile, yellow-billed loon, generally associated with coastal regions, was discovered within the fountain at the Bellagio,” shared officials from the Nevada Department of Wildlife on Instagram, along with a clip of the loon happily going into the water. “Early this morning, biologists safely captured and relocated the loon to a more suitable and remote location where it has space, food, and quiet surroundings.”

A yellow-billed loon, a bird not usually found on the mainland of the U.S., landed in the fountain of the Bellagio Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas.

The rare Yellow-Billed Loon that's taken up residence at the Bellagio fountain in Las Vegas
byu/MulciberTenebras inpics

To ensure the safety of the bird, the hotel paused its famed fountain show.

The Nevada Department of Wildlife then captured the bird and, after making sure it in good health, relocated it to a more appropriate space.

h/t: [News3LV]

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Regina Sienra

Regina Sienra is a Staff Writer at My Modern Met. Based in Mexico City, Mexico, she holds a bachelor’s degree in Communications with specialization in Journalism from the National Autonomous University of Mexico. She has 10+ years’ experience in Digital Media, writing for outlets in both English and Spanish. Her love for the creative arts—especially music and film—drives her forward every day.
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