It’s just a quick update this week as we have been all hands to the deck again with hand rearing, school trips and preparing for Summer (yes, Summer!)
We have 3 Greater Rhea hatch this week. The chicks are mobile from hatch and are following the parents (mainly dad) around the enclosure and feeding themselves. Dad keeps a close eye on his brood and the chicks will tuck themselves away in his feathers when he is sat down.
The Emerald Doves have hatched at least one of their two eggs, our second hatching of this species this year.
Hand rearing continues with the Kookaburra youngster really starting to develop. The chick is being hand reared by Rob and although it’s eyes aren’t open as yet, its feathers are starting to come through and you can now see hints of white & brown. The chick has also produced its first pellet this week
The Military Macaw chick is 4 week old today and is doing well. We have him/her down to 4 feeds a day, the eyes are now open and the chick is no longer being kept warm by artificial means. I have the chick sat at home with me as I write this and it is watching curiously
The Northern Helmeted Curassow chick also reaches 28 days old today. We have had the chick outside for a while for the first time this week and all went well.
We lost the older Yellow Shouldered Amazon chick unexpectedly over the weekend. The chick suddenly stopped emptying its crop and despite our best efforts it passed away. Parrot chicks can be particularly prone to bacterial & yeast infections so our remaining Amazon, and the Macaw, are now on a precautionary course of anti-biotics. The 3rd Amazon chick that is with the parents is also doing well.
The Chaco Owl has been fitted with jessies and flying school will start in the next few days.
A new arrival this week was a Chinese Painted Quail. These are not unusual as they are commonly available but this one was slightly unusual as he was caught wild in the village. No-one has come forward to claim him so after a couple more days of quarantine he will be joining our other bird in the finch aviary.
We have had another egg this week from the Sacred Ibis, this is in another nest. Unfortunately they look to have taken over the Spoonbill nest and destroyed their egg.
The Roul Roul Partridges in the Discovery Zone have also laid this week but have broken a couple of the eggs. One has been rescued and is in the incubator.
A pair of Greater Flamingos were seen nest building this week. With the predicted warm weather this could really be a trigger for nesting behaviour so we will be regularly providing turned soil and dampening the nest island over the next few days. If that fails, then we may provide a dummy egg to see if that can trigger some interest.
The Black Swans seem to be getting on again this week with no problems of aggression from the male.
We were joined by Elmbridge Infant School this week and spent time with them talking about feathers, eggs and beaks.
Wildlife wise it has been a week of rescue. A mole was found wandering the tarmac near the penguin enclosure and was moved to safety off-show. I also rescued 2 toads from one of the aviary sheds this week.
Short & sweet this week but hopefully a bigger blog nest week, including news of a new Marabou Stork if all goes to plan.