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Tampa International Airport’s giant flamingo now has a name

A pink flamingo sculpture with name tag reading Hello my name is Phoebe
Tampa International Airport
Phoebe won 43% of the votes, almost 2,000 more votes than runner-up Cora. Finn trailed in third place.

The eye-catching public art piece has garnered international attention and was built after being chosen from more than 700 proposals.

After more than 37,000 votes cast, Tampa International Airport has announced the winner of its 'Name the Flamingo' contest.

Bryan McCuller, a retired educator from Daytona Beach Shores, says he relied on his academic background to come up with the name.

"So, the scientific name for a flamingo is Phoenicopterus Roseus,” he said. “So, I put those pieces together to come up with Phoebe because Phoebe is, of course, alliterative to flamingo and apparently many people thought Phoebe was a good choice."

Phoebe was the runaway winner with 2,000 more votes than second place Cora. Finn trailed far behind with just 18% of the vote.

The names were originally set to be revealed on Dec. 16, but the process was delayed as the judges needed more time to narrow down the “high volume of entries.”

Besides bragging rights, McCuller — a Tampa native — won four nonstop, Silver Airways tickets for himself and three companions and VIP tickets to Busch Gardens.

The hard to miss floor-to-ceiling flamingo, created by artist Matthew Mazzotta, has become a meeting point and photo destination for tourists and locals alike.

Construction of the resin and fiberglass sculpture in the airport's main terminal, was completed earlier this year, with metal panels and lighting attached to the ceiling as part of the artwork. This gives the illusion of being underwater while looking up at the flamingo.

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