July Hatchlings Around Zoo Atlanta
July 2017 has brought hatchlings at nests throughout Zoo Atlanta for species native to both Africa and the Americas.
A blue crane chick hatched July 8, 2017. The chick was produced via artificial insemination conducted by Zoo Atlanta staff and is the first offspring of the Zoo’s blue crane pair.
The new arrival, whose sex is not yet known, has already surpassed a number of exciting milestones. When it was a day old, it was able to stand, walk, and eat mealworms fed by keepers after observing its mother’s feeding behavior. When the chick was 5 days old, its mother was seen feeding it crickets, worms and pieces of hardboiled egg. At nearly 3 weeks old, the chick now feeds on its own, although its mother continues to supply it with crickets and mealworms. See the chick following its parents in the blue crane habitat adjacent to the Outback Station petting zoo.
Also known as the Stanley crane, the blue crane is the national bird of South Africa. Although the species is protected, wild populations have declined dramatically as a result of urbanization, collection for the pet trade and poisoning by farmers who consider the birds crop pests.
The young blue crane isn’t the only new chick on the block! Zoo Atlanta also recently welcomed a green jay, hatched on July 7, and a speckled pigeon, hatched on July 17. The green jay is found in both North and South America, while the speckled pigeon is found in open habitats in sub-Saharan Africa. Neither species is currently classified as threatened, as both have adapted well to urbanization.