11th July 2011
Well what an eventful few days. boarded the ship with the eight newly hatched chicks, 12 eggs, considerable anxiety about the trip on rough seas and a great deal of hope. We got off the other end with only three eggs, but an amazing 17 chicks, so we were as happy as happy can be.
Things have gone as well as could possibly have been hoped for so far, but saving this species is still going to be an uphill battle. A couple of the hatchlings aren’t as strong as the others and we will have to accept that we will lose some.
The survival rate for spoon-billed sandpiper chicks in the wild is extremely low. On average just four chicks fledge out of around 20 eggs laid and only one of these would survive to recruit into the adult population two years later. Taking these newly hatched chicks from hatching to fledging will be enough of a challenge on its own. However, even this is dwarfed by the work that we and our partners need to do to tackle the threats to the species in the wild.