Hello friends and family
It was a cold start to the week – back into winter socks and a throw on the bed. By Tuesday it was warming up and a good time to take the first 4 chicks to soft release. The oldest chicks in the colony have fledged and it is always strange to visit an empty nest as even though the chicks may be hiding or sleeping, when they leave, it feels different.
We also erected the moulters tent. If we get a penguin into care underweight pre-moult, we can fatten it up and then let it moult in the tent – all the feathers are dropped, and no clean-up is required – we just move the tent. The penguins love it and will go back into it when they have been released. This was also the day that the donated fish from the Antarctic centre arrived. Thanks so much for this donation. The penguins don’t mind the smaller fish, it just takes longer to feed them, all good.
The days are filling up. On Wednesday morning I had my first visit to the Hampden house and met the tenants – lovely people. In the afternoon I fed the chicks in soft release and did the water blasting.
There were 4 of us to do the rounds on Thursday. There were no new juveniles moulting but we did see 2 two-year-olds and a few adults. Slowly the chicks are disappearing. The pillowcases that we use to weigh them in are getting very tattered. We took 2 Juveniles that had had Malaria to the tent to complete their moult.
On Friday I released the Fiordland Crested penguin at lunch time when I was feeding the soft release chicks. By 3 pm Stewart had seen it back at Shag Point so it was surely ready to go.
Have a great week!