Hand rearing of 31 chicks in the Animal Park of Rosegg
On April 18, 11 additional chicks for hand-raising were taken from nests at Zoo Rosegg. Three further chicks came from the colony at the Konrad Lorenz Research Center in Grünau, Upper Austria. Together with the earlier collected chicks, a total of 31 Northern Bald Ibises will be hand-raised this year.
This alone is a superlative, because up to now only once, in 2015, this large number of chicks was reared. On average, there were 16 chicks per season.
In addition, this year´s chicks are raised as one group by the two foster-mothers Corinna Esterer and Anne-Gabriela Schmalstieg, backstage assisted by Ines Aster. Until now, no more than 17 chicks have been raised per team, which consisted of two people. If there were more chicks, as in the last two years, two groups of foster-parents raised two separate groups of birds, which were later fused into one group.
The experience of the past two years has prompted us to form only one group this year from the outset. This has the main advantage that all birds are imprinted to the same two foster-mothers, which will later guide them in the two aircrafts.
This year, the task of the foster-mothers is a quite demanding one; the success of the season depends on them. If it weren´t Corinna and Anne, with their professionalism and enthusiasm, such a situation would be avoided. But with this constellation we expect a quite successful season.
Our wild birds also started in a promising season. A total of 7 birds, which departed from their wintering site in Tuscany, have already reached one of the two breeding sites Burghausen and Kuchl and already started to breed. A further 10 migrating birds are already either in Austria or in Northern Italy. At the moment the sudden return of winter interrupts the migration, but hopefully this will soon change again.
Picture (J. Fritz): Lynne Hafner (left) looks after the Northern Bald Ibis colony at Zoo Rosegg; thanks to her extraordinary commitment, we have again received 28 chicks from this colony. Foster-mother Anne takes over a chick for hand-rearing.
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