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29 March 2018

Tough Time Hatching

Kicking through the wrong end of an egg is a tiring entry into the world for a kiwi and could have cost a Coromandel chick its life.

Luckily the chick from Moehau, at the top of the Coromandel Peninsula, had been dropped off at Kiwi Encounter hatchery at Rainbow Springs in Rotorua, and successfully hatched with a little bit of last-minute help.

"This occasionally happens, that the chick tries to come out the wrong way. Kiwi use their strong legs to push their way out of the egg, instead of coming out head first through the blunt end of the egg, this chick tried to come out legs first out the pointy end," said assistant kiwi husbandry manager Emma Bean.

"This chick had worn itself out trying to hatch legs first so we needed to give it a helping hand at the very end of the hatch. In the wild, the dad may have been able to provide some sort of assistance, but in reality this chick may have not have made it."

The chick's dad's name is Sky, and this is his second chick. The chick weighed 357g when it hatched on March 24.

Kiwi Encounter is the largest hatchery of Brown kiwi and crucial in kiwi conservation. This 2016/17 hatch season, which is drawing to a close, 124 kiwi chicks have hatched from around the North Island.