Sihek chick is a ‘beacon of hope’ for species

Sihek chick is a ‘beacon of hope’ for species
ZSL Sihek chick being fedZSL

The feminine sihek chick is getting cared for by specialist zookeepers

A recently hatched chick is a “beacon of hope” for a species of hen that is extinct in the wild, a London zookeeper has explained.

The toddler sihek, also known as the Guam kingfisher, hatched at a zoo in Kansas in the United States final month.

The species has not been seen in the wild considering the fact that the late 1980s but it is hoped an global collaboration amongst authorities will allow it to be re-launched to its native territory.

A spokesperson for the Zoological Culture of London (ZSL) said the woman chick marked a “important milestone” for the project.

Siheks the moment flourished on the North Pacific island of Guam but the accidental introduction of the brown tree snake to the island in the 1940s wiped out numerous indigenous birds, bats and lizards, ZSL said.

The very last wild sighting of a sihek was in 1988 and the birds are now thought of Extinct in the Wild by the Global Union for Conservation of Character.

There are currently only 141 siheks remaining in the entire world, all beneath human treatment.

The sihek restoration system is operating to set up a short term wild inhabitants on the American island Palmyra Atoll just before their eventual return to Guam, a US territory.

 John Ewen, ZSL Fully-grown Sihek John Ewen, ZSL

The chick will shortly be covered in blue and cinnamon-colored plumage

The chick is getting cared for all around-the-clock by a group of specialists to make certain the “valuable youngster’s survival”, ZSL reported.

Hen keeper Charlotte James stated: “With her eyes closed, a distinctive absence of feathers and weighing no extra than a pencil, this chick entered the planet instead peculiar hunting and completely dependent on us.

“But in just 30 days, she’ll have developed almost 10 times heavier and be covered in wonderful blue and cinnamon-coloured plumage.”

Ms James stated each person chick that properly hatches was a “large beacon of hope for the upcoming of this species”.

ZSL Charlotte James caring for sihek chickZSL

Charlotte James is portion of an all over-the-clock crew caring for the chick

The chick, that hatched at Sedgwick County Zoo, is at the moment fed a diet program of mice and bugs by caretakers – but if it is properly released in Palmyra Atoll’s forests, it will need to have to hunt for foods, which include bugs and geckos, ZSL explained.

Professor John Ewen, from conservation charity’s Institute of Zoology, explained the community of conservation zoos experienced played a “very important role” in preserving the species from extinction.

“Returning species to the wild is a long, thoroughly prepared-out journey built upon world wide scientific abilities,” he said.

“When a species is as close to the edge of extinction as the sihek, small populace quantities imply we normally face issues these types of as a lack of eggs and lessened fertility.

“As a end result, only one particular of the 7 eggs that have created the journey to Sedgwick County Zoo so far has effectively hatched – highlighting not only how particular this small chick is, but why it’s so crucial that we continue on to create substantial populations of Extinct in the Wild species less than human treatment and get the job done as swiftly as attainable to restore their wild numbers.”

ZSL Sihek chickZSL

The chick is currently being fed a diet of mice and insects