Caribbean Flamingo Chick born at Paradise Park
Monday 2nd September, 2019
The first ever Caribbean Flamingo chick born at Paradise Park in Hayle is being hand-reared by keepers.
Director Alison Hales comments “We love our flamingo group, and were delighted when two eggs were laid this summer. However one egg was infertile and then the second pair stopped incubating about a week too early. Keepers decided to put the egg in an incubator not knowing if it would hatch, but within days the egg started chirping! The chick hatched successfully on 19th August – it’s early days but so far it’s growing well on two-hourly feeds of a special ‘fish soup’ prepared by Keeper Becky.”
Keeper Becky Waite explains “We are so excited to have a Caribbean flamingo chick. Our flock was very small until last Summer when five arrived from Slimbridge Wetland Centre. With a bigger flock size we were in a stronger position to achieve breeding success. One pair did lay an egg earlier in the summer which sadly was not fertile. But this did trigger the flock to build nests. The shallow pond area is an ideal location as the mud is the perfect building material.”
You can watch a video clip here: https://youtu.be/4yCHqTYtE0M
PLEASE NOTE: He (or she, we don’t know yet) is not out for visitors to see but may be spotted out on the lawn of Glanmor House in the centre of the Park for short periods of exercise.
Becky continues “Both parents were hatched at Chester Zoo in July 2002, so are 17 years old. They came to Paradise Park in 2004. This egg was laid on 20th July and hatched on 19th August, so took 31 days to incubate. Due to the parents having stopped incubating the egg a few days before it was due to hatch, we stepped in and put the egg in an incubator. For the first few days I am feeding the chick every two hours between 6am and 10pm.”
Flamingos form strong pair bonds, and just one egg is laid with both male and female feeding the chick on a special ‘crop milk’. They are long lived birds that can reach the age of 40, and able to breed from age 6.