Greater Flamingo chicks have successfully hatched at WWT Martin Mere Wetland Centre.
Those who have visited the wetland centre in Burscough in the past few weeks will have seen the adult flamingos displaying their fascinating courtship routines. During the breeding season, they will perform ritualised stretching and preening while marching in unison.
Greater flamingo chicks stay in their nests for around 5 to 12 days. Once they are able to walk and swim, they will join a group of young flamingos called a crèche, where they are looked after by an adult but return to their parents to be fed.
Adults are able to recognise their young by sight and sound. The chicks do not have the iconic pink-coloured feathers as the adults do. Instead, they have grey down to provide them with lots of insulation to keep them warm and will not get their pink feathers until they are around two to four years old.
Victoria Fellowes, Deputy Centre Manager, said, “We’re pleased to welcome these flamingo chicks into our Martin Mere family. They are doing very well and the parents are doing a great job at taking care of them. They have now started to leave their nests and visitors can get a fantastic view of them.
“We can’t wait to watch them grow over the summer period and hope our visitors are as excited as we are. You can get a closer look at them at our centre each day from 9:30 – 18:00”
The news comes not long after white stork chicks successfully hatched at Martin Mere – making it an exciting year for new life at the centre with more good news expected across their living collection in the next few weeks.
Both the stork and flamingo chicks arrived just in time for May half term when Martin Mere will have lots of activities for families to enjoy during their visit such as the new Drawn to Water: Quentin Blake at WWT seasonal trail, art and illustration, and moth trapping.
Those interested in finding out more about the different stages of eggs can visit each day of the half term for the ‘Egg to Duckling’ activity, which explains the weekly progress of egg growth and the process Martin Mere goes through when hatching eggs in their duckery. See what’s on via the Martin Mere website