Rare Endangered Albatross Takes Flight from Midway Atoll

Jonathan Plissner recently witnessed a rare event—the fledging of a Short-tailed Albatross on Midway Atoll. In celebration of the first World Albatross Day, he shares his thoughts on this event and hopes for the future.

Short-tailed Albatross are one of the rarest and most endangered seabirds in the Pacific. Most of the global population breeds on islands in Japan, but for decades one or two of these large distinctive Albatross have called Midway Atoll home. In 2016 a new potential pair—Lonesome George and Geraldine—began to form on Midway, and in 2019 they successfully raised a chick. Only a handful of short-tailed albatross have been know to fledge from Midway Atoll, and because the birds are so rare any successful chick is a cause to celebrate!

Lonesome George and Geraldine nesting on Midway Atoll. Credit: Jonathan Plissner

Recently Island Conservation’s Island Restoration Specialist, Jonathan Plissner, was lucky enough to watch this rare event unfold on Midway Atoll. This is the second year that Lonesome George and Geraldine have laid their own egg and successfully reared a chick, but just a few short weeks ago the chick, disappeared from its nest site. After about a week, the chick unexpectedly reappeared on a beach across Sand Island. Jonathan and a few Fish and Wildlife staff members on Midway trailed the young bird, still with some downy feathers, the remainder of the day as it steadily walked the beaches eastward (reminiscent of Forrest Gump’s cross-country running groupies). After resting for the night near the northeast end of the island, the bird made its way to the water early the next morning. As a small pod of dolphins swam past, the chick took flight across the water, leaving land behind for the next five or more years. Jonathan explained the excitement of the moment, saying:

The thrill of seeing this rare bird fly off into the rising sun was amplified by raising my hopes for last year’s chick, the first-ever known to have hatched on Sand Island, which also disappeared from the nest site earlier than expected in late May.”

Jonathan Plissner (left) and a staff member from US Fish and Wildlife band the Short-tailed albatross chick on Midway Atoll. Photo by Narongkorn Thatsanangkun

Jonathan likes to imagine that last year’s chick made a similar journey, crossing the beaches undetected before also leaving Midway behind. These Albatross will spend the next 5-7 years at sea and then perhaps will be the first to return to breed on a rodent-free Midway Atoll. Securing Midway as a critical nesting site for not only Short-tailed Albatross, but also the world’s largest population of Laysan Albatross and one-third of the global Black-footed Albatross population could be a potential turning point for the global populations of these incredible seabirds.

Today, June 19, 2020, is the inaugural World Albatross Day—a day to celebrate these incredible ocean wanderers, but also to reflect on the threats these seabirds face and the conservation actions necessary to protect them. The theme for this year is the threat of invasive species, a particularly relevant concern since two globally significant projects to remove invasive mice from islands to protect Albatross were planned for this year, but have been postponed due to the ongoing pandemic. Still, Jonathan reminds us that island species have an incredible capacity for recovery, saying:

Nature has a way of reminding us that species and populations often have a remarkable capacity for resilience and fuel our hopes for recovering natural systems.”

Featured photo: George the Short-tailed Albatross and his chick at 2 months old. Credit: Jonathan Plissner

About Island Conservation

Island Conservation prevents extinctions by removing invasive species from islands. To date, we have successfully restored 64 islands worldwide, benefiting 1195 populations of 487 species and subspecies. Working together with local communities, government management agencies, and conservation organizations, we select islands that have the greatest potential for preventing the extinction of globally threatened species.

View All Posts

Follow Island Conservation on Social Media

[ism-social-followers list='fb,tw,li,youtube,instagram' template='ism_template_sf_1' list_align='horizontal' display_counts='false' display_full_name='true' box_align='center' ]

[ism-social-followers list='fb,tw,li,youtube,instagram' template='ism_template_sf_1' list_align='horizontal' display_counts='false' display_full_name='true' box_align='center' ]

Midway Atoll conservation




%d bloggers like this:
Send this to a friend

ed pills over the counter reddit penis pills geoduck male enhancement msm for male enhancement max size male enhancement formula ginseng drugs male enhancement pills prima triple x 2000 male enhancement review confirmed penis enlargement best drug for premature ejaculation images of ed pills man of steel 2 male enhancement hardness factor supplements newgenics supplement order pills online topp selling herbal ed pills male fertility supplements walmart zeus tablets smx me male enhancement formula him ed pills shipping free male enhancement sample bottles naturally big penis male enlargement pills emilys blog male enhancement what does a male enhancement pill do how to use shutran for male enhancement world best top penis enlargment pills extacy pills list amazon best sellers sex pills green and purple pill male enhancement pills that work rhino best sex enhancer pills for male epic male enhancement website want penis enlargement pills pennywise penis manual penis enlargement pdf pills after sex to avoid pregnancy best dick enlargement pill maca man sex pills for instant erection does bull male enhancement work drug cialis fast working sex enhancement pills aphrodisiac pill golden gorilla sex pills best tablets 2020 blue kangaroo male enhancement the best male enhancement pills xtreme revive gold male enhancement

buy cbd oil online cbd oil for social anxiety cbd sublingual adelaide hotels cbd cbd for ptsd healthy hemp cbd oil lazarus cbd reviews top 10 cbd oil can you fail a drug test from cbd oil south carolina cbd oil laws cbd retail store dateline cbd cbd for cte cbd oil at whole foods where can you buy cbd oil in illinois cbd gummies vegan cbd promotional codes how much cbd to get high cbd lower blood pressure try cbd oil free are cbd and hemp oil the same thing cbd shoppe dementia and cbd oil best cbd oil for pain amazon diy cbd bath bombs does cbd oil give you energy legal cbd oil for sale will cbd get you high cbd topical patch depression cbd wedding reception sydney cbd cbd oil omega 3 baristas cbd coffee cbd shop lawrence ks cbd oil parasites cbd 500mg cream cbd for peripheral neuropathy lavender cbd oil cbd oil vaping pen 20 best cbd oils reviews of charlottes web cbd oil wholesale cbd edibles how cbd oil cures cancer apartments in perth cbd cbd oil pill form free cbd oil offer

quick weight loss diets that work exercise and diet plan for rapid weight loss weight loss pills for thyroid patients legit prescription strength weight loss pills complete keto diet pills illegal weight loss supplements keto diet pregnancy recipes doctor oz rapid weight loss diet how to lose weight without diet iu diet weight loss myproana what pills vitamin help weight loss detox diet plan to lose weight what cheeses are good for weight loss diet amazon prime weight loss pills weight loss pills selena gomez what is dr gundrys one diet change to lose weight weight loss pills that are big and white kim kardashian baby weight loss diet rapid safe weight loss pills pm weight loss supplement apple cider vinegar advantage weight loss pills lose weight maintain muscle supplement power pro weight loss pills best online weight loss pills trim your diet weight loss doctors and weight loss pills cereal diet loss weight fast keto diet drink recipes 1500 calories diet weight loss weight loss diet what not to eat 28 day weight loss diet men best weight loss pills for mens belly fat fully raw vegan diet weight loss diabetic weight loss diet fast weight loss on sugar free diet weight loss juice diet reviews krill oil weight loss and diet best diet guaranteed weight loss balanced diet plans for weight loss printable list of prescription weight loss drugs how does quick weight loss center diet work dream diet weight loss center miami keto diet when do you see weight loss exercise to lose weight teen girls pills what pills i took to lose weight number 1 rated weight loss pill