If you’re having a tough day and need a lift, just take a look at this little furball – a tawny frogmouth chick – at the Woodland Park Zoo.
No one can stay in a bad mood after seeing that little face!
The bird hatched last Thursday – the first time this species has hatched at the zoo.
The birth is significant for the zoo population in North America. Woodland Park is one of only four zoos to have successfully bred this species in the last six years. Expert keeper staff artificially incubated the egg for 25 days (incubation is typically 28-30 days). Within an hour of hatching, staff returned the chick to the nest for the parents to take over parental care. The parents are attentive and protective of the chick and, based on the chick’s weight gain, they are doing a good job of feeding their chick.
The parents and hatchling are off public exhibit to allow staff to monitor parental care and ensure regular feedings by the parents. But visitors can see an adult male tawny frogmouth in the zoo’s Night Exhibit.
Tawny frogmouths are nocturnal birds native to Australia. Although frogmouths have many similar habits to owls, they are actually more closely related to nightjars and oilbirds.