Hey, eagle chicks, make way for a California condor!
A California condor egg hatched in the wild Monday, and for the first time in history, anyone with an Internet connection can watch it. And a live streaming video from a cliffside nest at Hopper Mountain National Wildlife Refuge in Ventura County, California, will capture the young condor's journey to adulthood.
Interested? Condor biologists from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and Santa Barbara Zoo will answer questions about the condor nest from the public during an online livestream video chat hosted by Cornell Lab of Ornithology on April 14 at 10 a.m. PT/1 p.m. ET.
“We’re eager and excited to not only be able to share this experience with the world, but also open up the opportunity for more people to learn about California condors, what makes them such remarkable birds, and draw attention to the very real threats they face in the wild,” says Joseph Brandt, one of our condor biologists.
The egg was incubated as part of the California Condor Recovery Program’s captive breeding effort at Los Angeles Zoo and replaced the California condor #111 and California condor #509 pair’s wild-laid egg that went missing in March. Biologists quickly mobilized to replace the missing egg with a dummy egg to ensure the male and female continued to incubate at the nest. On April 2, the captive-bred egg was placed into the nest. The soon-to-be condor parents, 22-year-old female condor, California condor #111 and her seven-year-old mate, California condor #509, have been courting since fall of 2014, and hatched their first wild chick together in April 2015. Sadly, the pair’s first chick died from lead poisoning, a harsh reality of the man-made threat condors continue to face in the wild.