31/01/2014 | Projects | 0
Last night's southerly was perfect departure weather for the fluttering shearwater chicks: a bit of cloud cover, and a good wind to allow them to take off from the slope. As a result more chicks have fledged than remain at the colony - although that's a close run thing: 39 fledged, and 38 remaining! In contrast, weather the night before was clearly not conducive to departures as only one chick left.
This picture is of 'best friends' 71 and 72, taken on Thursday morning - however one of them was amongst last night's 18 departures, so now there's just one.
It's interesting to speculate about whether their paths will cross again in the future.
A chick that turned up after being AWOL was so pleased to be back home that it didn't even leave the burrow last night. So many birds are out at night exploring on the surface and getting in wing flapping practice that they've all lost almost all their down (rubbed off - and possibly blown off?!). You can see in the picture just how adult the birds are looking these days.