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Star albatross chick in intensive care

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 31/01/2017

The albatross "webcam" chick that hatched on the Otago Peninsula on Saturday, who was set to become an internet star, is now in intensive care.

The chick, whose sex is unknown, hatched on January 28 and was doing well, but was found flyblown on Monday.

The Royal Albatross Centre removed maggots from the chick and cleaned the area, but the chick dropped below its hatch weight on Tuesday.

The chick has been removed from its nest and placed in intensive care, and a foster chick has been placed in its nest.

Staff will try and return the chick to its own nest before it's six weeks old, as the adult albatross usually reject chicks that have been swapped after that stage.

The chick's parents, BK and RBK, and the nest have been a hit online, as well as the previous nest which hatched Moana, when the Department of Conservation set up the webcam, Royal Cam, in January last year.

Chicks are often fostered at the colony and it improves chances of survival.

The webcam was set up at Pukekura/Taiaroa Head to document the albatross nest and highlight albatross conservation.

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