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Photo Gallery: All hail the mighty pink flamingo!

Donald Featherstone, creator of the plastic lawn flamingo, died June 22, 2015 at the age of 79. We offer a photographic homage to him and his magnificent creation (along with a few little-known facts about flamingoes that you may find surprising).

1. Photo caption: (August 25, 1997) Don Featherstone places some of the 500 plastic birds for display in front of Universal Studios Florida as part of the flamingo's 40th anniversary celebration. The flamingo flock was the second-largest gathering ever assembled; the largest occurred in 1987 when 750 were brought together for the bird's 30th anniversary. Featherstone created the flamingo for Union Products, Inc. and 20 million of the lawn ornaments have been produced since 1957. [Joe Burbank | AP]

2. Little known fact #1: Flamingoes are avid gardeners. Photo caption: (October 23, 1998) "I'm using this good cool morning to get things took care I should have took care of," said Butis Bledsoe (who couldn't believe that i was stupid enough to ask a lady her age) as she worked in her garden in Brooksville. Bledsoe was digging up caladiums that were doing poorly because "winter was too wet and summer was too dry until it got too wet" She plants a small bed of caladiums to accent her display of plastic flamingos, flowers and bees, plus she has plastic chickens, dogs, a fawn and raccoons scattered about her yard. [Kevin White | Times]

3. It's virtually axiomatic: Flamingoes + birthdays = smiles. Photo caption: (February 12, 2002) On her 75th birthday, Sylvia Hobscheid awoke to quite a surprise - 50 pink plastic flamingos in her front yard. "I almost had a heart attack when I looked outside this morning," she said. "Seventy five, I admit, is a milestone but I never expected this." [Daniel Wallace | Times]

4. Little known fact #2: Flamingoes enjoy playing football and, disregarding their own safety, will often flock en masse to a runner in order to bring him down. Photo caption: (August 3, 2006) Wharton High School linebacker Josh Jones lies amongst pink plastic flamingo lawn ornaments in a suburban New Tampa lawn. [Melissa Lyttle | Times]

5. Decorating a flamingo is one of the highest forms of artistic expression known to man. Photo caption: (April 3, 2002) Susan Taylor of St. Petersburg decorates her plastic flamingo at the Flock of Fools event at the Sirata Beach Resort. Taylor was one of 100 participants competing in the event sponsored by the St. Petersburg Museum of History. Each participant was given a plastic flamingo to decorate. [Cherie Diez | Times]

6. Little known fact #3: Flamingoes are so photogenic they will let you walk right up to them with your camera. Photo caption: (February 4, 2005) A St. Petersburg business called Get the Flock Outta My Yard services the entire bay area with plastic lawn ornaments to celebrate things like birthdays, anniversaries, etc. [Mike Pease | Times]

7. Less attractive birds will often position themselves next to the noble pink flamingo in order to get attention. Photo caption: (June 4, 1996) A peacock, know to local residents as Popeye, takes his place between two pink, plastic flamingos in a backyard off Lake Joyce Drive in the Lake Padgett Estates subdivision of Land O' Lakes. [Jack Rowland | Times]

8. Little known fact #4: Flamingoes love trick-or-treating (though they hate everyone saying "Hey, weren't you here already tonight?"). Photo caption: (October 28, 2002) Don Bennett is running for the board of supervisors of the Cheval West Community Development District in an election that focuses on how strictly Cheval West should enforce deed restrictions. Years ago, Bennett had a dispute with the CDD because he challenged the deed restriction against "lawn ornaments," which he considered undefined. He put a small plastic flock of his wife's favorite animal, pink flamingoes, in his front yard. [Fraser Hale | Times]

9. Three little words: Flamingo drag queen! Photo caption: (January 21, 2008) You've been flocked!!! reads the sign next to Flo-Mingo and her flock of plastic flamingos on the lawn of the Benedictine Sisters of Florida Holy Name Monastery in San Antonio. The installation advertises the 'Relay for Life' fundraiser to raise money for cancer research. [Mike Pease | Times]