New recruits join the cause

Choughs arrive with Ray and Alison Hales. 12-2013. Photo by Liz Corry

By Liz Corry

Three new choughs arrived in Jersey last week thanks to our friends at Paradise Park. On arrival they went straight to Durrell’s Vet Department for routine health screening then on to Sorel. They are now undertaking a thirty-day quarantine period before being allowed out.

These new recruits are two chicks from this year and an older male juvenile. Having more males in the group will hopefully boost breeding opportunities in the forthcoming years. They have certainly settled in well, coming down for food and going straight on the weighing scales. The ‘older’ residents have also warmed to them although due to the quarantine restrictions they are separated at present.

The new recruits have been given colour rings and uniquely coded transponders. At a later date they will be fitted with radio transmitters to follow their movements in the wild.

The arrival of the new choughs coincides with the decision to postpone releases until the New Year. When the weather starts to improve and daylight hours increase we will look to continue. By that time the quarantine period should have ended and the two groups mixed, trained, and ready to take to the skies once again.

Newly arrived chough 12-20123. Photo by Liz Corry