Seabird news

Pycroft’s petrel monitoring – 2021 breeding season

John Stewart reports the Pycroft’s petrel news from Motuora is pretty good.  As of 4th January 2021 there were 16 pairs on eggs, with one new pair occupying a box but with no egg and two single birds in different boxes That’s up from 10 eggs/chicks last year. Unfortunately, Covid-19 related restrictions on Island visits in 2020 meant that last year chicks fledged without being banded so there will be some uncertainty about their return rate.

This year 15 Pycroft’s petrel chicks hatched and grew steadily.  Monitoring teams made fortnightly trips to the island to check progress and on 10th March a small team made a brief visit to the Island to band the chicks. It went well and all chicks were banded. They were all looking good with just one chick noticeably smaller than the rest, but even that one was fine, just running a bit later than the others. Estimate is that all will fledge before the end of April.

Pycroft’s petrel chick at early stage
Pycroft’s petrel chick with feathers well developed

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