Saturday, January 29, 2022

Antipodean wandering albatrosses (Diomedea antipodensis) colonising the Chatham Islands

TitleAntipodean wandering albatrosses (Diomedea antipodensis) colonising the Chatham Islands
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2008
AuthorsMiskelly, CM, McNally, N, Seymour, R, Gregory-Hunt, D, Lanauze, J
Type of Articlearticle
KeywordsAntipodean wandering albatross, breeding, Chatham Islands, colonisation, Diomedea antipodensis, Diomedea exulans

Large albatrosses, subsequently identified as Antipodean wandering albatrosses (Diomedea antipodensis), began prospecting for nest sites inland from the south-western coast of Chatham Island about 1998. The 1st egg was laid about the end of Mar 2003. What is presumed to be the same female laid an egg nearby in Feb 2004 and 2005. Although the 2004 egg hatched, each of these 3 breeding attempts failed. A subadult male Antipodean wandering albatross was found in Waipaua Scenic Reserve on Pitt Island in May 2002, and what may have been the same bird was ashore at the same site in Jan 2004. An egg was found at this site in Apr 2004 and the resulting chick fledged in Jan 2005. What is presumed to have been a different pair was found with an egg on Mount Hakepa, Pitt I, in early Jan 2006; their egg hatched in Apr 2006, and the chick fledged about 7 Jan 2007. What is presumed to be the same pair also nested successfully at the Mount Hakepa site in 2008/2009, with the chick fledging on 6 Jan 2009. These 6 breeding attempts (3 successful) by perhaps 3 different pairs at widely spaced sites on the Chatham Islands are the 1st records of Antipodean wandering albatrosses breeding away from the Antipodes Is and Campbell I.

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