Monday, 16 August 2010

Albatross release

I was invited to a bird release today by Rosemary our local bird rescuer accompanied by D.O.C. staff Gregg and James. They unloaded a crate big enough for your average labrador so I knew it was going to be something special. Meet Sally, a Salvins Albatross or Mollymawk. She was found in an exhausted state and Rosemary nursed her back to a healthy bodyweight by stuffing fish down her very sharp bill supplied by the last 'Take a Kid fishing" contest.
Altho to be totally honest we didn't really know if she was a she or he. But definitely an adult.
After being freed from her crate on a hilltop high over Ohope beach she lost no time in heading off....
on foot. And an albatross on foot is not in its element. These birds live almost entirely on the ocean except for when they breed.

So we suspected she was looking for the right head wind or runway. She made her way down the paddock slowly and awkwardly.
Woohoo! She must be about to take off..... but nearly an hour later we were still waiting.
So whether she got stage fright, was still feeling a bit tired or just wanted another day of free fish, who knows but back in her crate she went til tomorrow.

Which goes to show you can lead an Albatross to water but you can't make it fly.


Peregrine's Bird Blog said...

I posted on your flickr that this might be a chatham island albatross but seeing these photos I am not so sure.. Sometimes the light makes the beak appear more yellow but some images make it more salvins like.

Lucky Dip Lisa said...

How awesome (and lucky for us!) you were invited to this. I reckon it was the free fish...