10 14/10/2010

Philippine Cockatoo success

Rasa Island is a small coral island off Palawan in the Philippines and is home to around 75% of the world’s population of Philippine Cockatoo. Chester Zoo has been supporting the Katala Foundation’s Philippine Cockatoo Conservation Programme in Palawan for many years, helping to save this Critically Endangered bird.

A food shortage and severe drought this season meant that only five of 15 hatchlings on the island survived.  Earlier this year, these five hatchlings were rescued from starvation from Rasa Island.  The wardens had a huge job on their hands; refining methods in hand-raising birds with reduced exposure to humans to avoid imprinting and then releasing them back into the wild.  

Following all their hard work, the process of re-releasing the fledglings went smoothly; the released birds integrated with the wild flock on Rasa and all but one survived, making the wardens’ work a huge success, while improving their skills in hand-rearing and re-releasing.

Find out more on our Philippine Conservation Programme

Photo courtesy of Katala Foundation.