Shoebill Stork Size: Explained And Compared With Others

Shoebill Stork Size

I’m sitting here in my safari car in Ziwa looking at a shoebill stork and wondering how big are they. 

For those who don’t know Ziwa is an archaeological site in Nyanga District, Zimbabwe.

Coming back to the question, From looking at an image I thought they were normal or small birds.

But when you see them in person they’re quite big. 

And here I brought you this article about shoebill stork size and how it compares to others.

I have answered most of the queries like Are they bigger than ostriches, eagles, and albatross? And how small are they compared to us?

So without further ado, let’s get into it.

Shoebill Stork Length: What’s Their Height?

Shoebill Stork Size

Before knowing the height of the bird let’s first discuss how the bird’s height is measured.

So most of the time these height experiments are performed on dead birds. 

To measure the bird’s height the length is taken from bill tip to tail tip with a measuring apparatus.

So now talking about the length of the shoebill stork (Length is generally referred to as a scientific term while most commonly it is known as height).

On average shoebill stork height can range from 110-140cm (3.6-4.5ft) with some exceptions being as tall as 152cm (4.9ft). 

Shoebill doesn’t really show sexual dimorphism in height both males and females tend to be in a similar height range.

The overall height of the bird can be affected by various reasons like regional differences, protein in the diet, etc.

Shoebill Stork110-140cm (3.6-4.5ft)

Shoebill Stork Weight

Shoebill Stork Size

Now when it comes to weight shoebill storks do show sexual dimorphism. The males tend to be a little heavier than the females.

So On average shoebill stork weight can range from 4 to 7 kg (8.8 to 15.4 lb). With males carrying an average weight of 5.6 kg (12 lb) and females on the other hand carrying 4.9 kg (11 lb).

Shoebill stork weight can vary according to region and diet. There are various significant factors that affect the overall weight of the bird.

BirdWeight RangeAverage Weight
Male Shoebill Stork4 to 7 kg (8.8 to 15.4 lb)5.6 kg (12 lb)
Female Shoebill Stork4 to 7 kg (8.8 to 15.4 lb)4.9 kg (11 lb)

Shoebill Strok Wingspan

Before getting into shoebill’s wingspan let’s first discuss what it is. So a bird’s wingspan is a length from one tip of the wing to the other tip of the wing.

Wingspan measurement is usually done on dead birds with a measuring apparatus. Since performing this measurement on a live bird is quite difficult.

But since it’s done on dead birds there’s room for errors.

Now talking about the wingspan, on average Shoebill stork wingspan ranges between 230 to 260 cm (7.7ft to 8.6ft ). 

Shoebill’s don’t really show sexual dimorphism in the wingspan also. So both males and females have the same range for wingspan.

Shoebill Stork230 to 260 cm (7.7ft to 8.6ft) 

Shoebill Stork Size Comparison To Human

Now this is one of the most common queries regarding the shoebill stork size. Most of the time people ask well how tall/big are they compared to us.

So on average human beings’ height ranges from 5.5-5.9ft and comparing that to a shoebill’s height i.e. approx 4ft tall. They do seem small compared to us. 

If we were to stand next to each other they’ll probably come to our chest level.

But when we compare our average height and their wingspan we look tiny. Their average wingspan is 7.7-8.6ft. Even the NBA guys will not a chance against them.

BasisHuman BeingsShoebill Stork
Weight60-80kg (132-176 lbs)4 to 7 kg (8.8 to 15.4 lb)
Wingspan/Armspan5.5-5.9ft7.7ft to 8.6ft

Shoebill Stork Vs Ostrich 

Ostriches are one of the biggest birds in the world. So now the question is how big are they compared to shoebill stork?

On average ostriches, height ranges between 5.7 to 9 feet and they weigh approx 63 to 145 kilograms (139–320 lb).  

Now if we compare both of them ostriches have an upper hand in most things.

BasisOstrichesShoebill Stork
Height5.7 to 9 feet3.6-4.5ft
Weight3 to 145 kilograms (139–320 lb)4 to 7 kg (8.8 to 15.4 lb)
Wingspan6-6.6ft7.7ft to 8.6ft

Shoebill Stork Vs Eagle Size Comparison

Eagles are one of the most dangerous birds of prey on this plant. Their overall body stats are quite high also when compare to a normal bird.

So on average eagles have a height range of 2.5 to 3.9 feet, with a wingspan range of 5.9-9 feet, and weigh approx 2-9kg (4.4-19lbs).

When we compare them to the shoebill stork they do seem to have an upper hand in a few aspects.

BasisEaglesShoebill Stork
Height2.5 to 3.9ft3.6-4.5ft
Weight2-9kg (4.4-19lbs)4 to 7 kg (8.8 to 15.4 lb)
Wingspan5.9-9ft7.7ft to 8.6ft

Shoebill Stork Vs Albatross Size Comparison

Albatrosses are considered giant birds across the globe.

On average albatross have a height range of 3.6-4.5ft, with a wingspan range of 8-10ft, and weigh approx 5.9 to 12.7 kg (13 to 28 lb).

Now when we compare them to the shoebill stork they do seem to win in all aspects.

BasisAlbatrossShoebill Stork
Weight5.9 to 12.7 kg (13 to 28 lb)4 to 7 kg (8.8 to 15.4 lb)
Wingspan8-10ft7.7ft to 8.6ft


That was everything you need to know about the shoebill stork size. I hope this article was informative enough and you got something useful from it.

Thank You For Reading!

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