Hello friends and family.
We have now found 11 moulting juveniles and 2 came into care on Tuesday. We also picked up Mrs 70 and her chick. She and 2 juveniles all have Malaria. Mrs 70 is here for her 3rd bout of Malaria. She came in with it in 2019 and 2020. She was okay last season. In that time, she has produced 3 more chicks. Let’s hope they are developing some immunity.
Our core team of Robbie, Elaine, Jan and myself were joined by Bronwyn on Tuesday. We were measuring heads here at Katiki to help identify gender. So far, boys are outnumbering girls. When we repeated the exercise on Thursday at the Moeraki colony, there were more girls than boys!
On Thursday we were joined by Carissa who is doing her PHD in changing the behaviour of dog owners at beaches with wildlife. We had a lively discussion and then she joined us at the Moeraki colony before having a late lunch with Bronwyn. After that I went to Moeraki beach to rescue a Northern Giant Petrel that had stranded on the beach. As I was leaving, some locals arrived with their dogs that they let out of the truck without even looking along the beach. Foolishly I spoke to them about having their dogs on a lead. The chasm is very wide.
On Friday I got a call about a penguin seen from the road on Katiki Beach. I rescued a sorry looking Erect Crested penguin. Like the Fiordland penguin that came in on Monday, crested penguins are very social. Seeing another penguin reduces their stress enormously. Fortunately, penguins can see each other from the pens within each enclosure as we are required to keep each species separate. The Tawake (Fiordland) penguin, has his own opinion about this and chooses to jump into the pen with the Hoiho chicks. Each feed I put him back into his own pen, so we have this game that we play. With 15 penguins in care, it is never dull!
Hiltrun arrived in drizzle yesterday and it cleared up. We were able to get the rounds done and the penguins fed before the rain returned.
Have a great week!