Tracy Aviary recently welcomed a rare and important bird to their habitats. A green-naped pheasant pigeon recently hatched at the aviary with the help of the employees. Shauna Foster, a primary aviculturist, joined Good Morning Utah to talk about the chick.
Included below are some facts about the chick.
- Parents (Linda and Bob) needed help with their egg, so Bird Care Staff decided to artifially incubate the chick and raise it from hatchling.
- Chick hatched on March 14th, 2019
- Green-naped Pheasant Pigeons are part of AZA’s Species Survival Plan (SSP). The SSP ensures birds under human care are paired with the intention hatch genetically healthy offspring that can continue to play an important role in conservation education. Bob and Linda are both genetically valuable but have not produced, so this chick is an important addition to the SSP.
- GNPP raise chicks through feeding them crop milk, much like other pigeons and doves. The keepers make a formula that contains all the nutrients that are needed for proper growth. They deliver this formula by feeding the chick from a syringe. The way they place their fingers and the syringe encourages a similar, natural feeding response as if the parents were feeding.
- The chick gets 15 minutes of sunshine right now, where the keeper take him out of his brooder.
- Right now the chick is growing in his adult feathers, his legs are getting stronger so he starting to walk around. We consider him fledged but he is still dependent on us for food.
- Looking forward, we will be introducing solid foods to him like papaya and other soft fruits. As he begins to eat these items on his own, we will reduce the amount of formula feeds. In addition we are introducing him to the exhibit and the birds that he will eventually live with. This way they will get to know him, and he will begin to get more comfortable around birds and the more natural surroundings.
- Bob and Linda are always on exhibit at Treasures of the Rainforest. There are also many species of tropical dwelling birds in the exhibit.
- We are passionate about educating our visitors on the importance of rainforests, and the diversity of plants, and animals that depend on rainforests. For humans, rainforests are also important as they provide many food products, materials, and oxygen that we need for survival. Along with inspiring curiosity for birds and nature we hope meeting birds like this little chick will encourage people to take their own steps in conservation–buying sustainable palm oil products, using public transportation, or even cutting back on the amount of single use plastics used in our homes. All of these actions not only help our beautiful state of Utah, but these actions contribute to the protection of birds all around the world.
- Visit Bob and Linda during business hours in Treasures of the Rainforest. Also guests can view feedings of the chick at 12:30 in the South American Pavilion. Keepers will be by at this time to also answer questions. And stay tuned, baby birds grow fast and we will be looking forward to seeing him in Treasures of the Rainforest, interacting with his exhibit mates!
To learn more you can visit Tracy Aviary’s website.