great news from one of the rarest animals in the world:
Seven kakapo chicks that hatched just over two weeks ago on Whenua Hou (Codfish Island) have been transferred to specialised facilities in Nelson to ensure their survival, Conservation Minister, Steve Chadwick announced today.
â€œI am thrilled with this seasonâ€™s kakapo breeding success. The safe arrival of these chicks brings the total kakapo population to 92 and is testament to the dedication of the Department of Conservation in ensuring that these ancient and critically endangered birds continue to survive,â€ Steve Chadwick said.
Kakapo last bred in 2005 when four chicks were produced, but the record year was in 2002 with 24 chicks.
the ranger’s diaries, a relatively new feature over at the official kakapo website, provide a little insight into the day-to-day ongoings:
Safely ensconced in their new Nelson facility, the birds have been enjoying a routine of four-hourly feeds starting at 7 in the morning and finishing at 11 at night. They are doing well and making good weight gains; several of them have now hit 500 grams and are getting quite large and feisty at feed time!
see also: kakapo-related blog posts at thinkoholic.com (including photos)