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Chick in a box

31 July 2014
Exciting news! 

Two of the three Leach's storm-petrels that nested in boxes this season have a chick!  Small petrel chick inside a nest box

I have my fingers crossed for another chick as the third box was occupied a little later in the season and the adult birds are still incubating their precious egg.Petrel egg inside a nest box


Very little is known about the growth patterns of Leach's storm-petrels so my plan this year is to measure and weigh the chicks and see how they develop across the season.  At the moment, the chicks looks like little balls of fluff with a bill and eyes and probably weigh the same too - this little chap was a hefty 40grams while the other chick was half the size! Petrel chick, box 19

Several of the other seabird species on St Kilda have finished breeding but it will be another nine or ten weeks before these chicks are big enough to fledge.  I'll make sure to monitor their progress and post some more (cute) pictures soon.

Gina


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