Great Lakes Piping Plover Recovery Effort

A partnership to study and conserve this migratory shorebird's endangered population between UMN, USFWS, USGS, NPS, DNR, more & You!

Rescue Captive Rearing

To help the GLPIPL population as much as possible, captive rearing efforts are used. Thus, if any eggs are ever abandoned or a nest is flooded or another compromising situation for GLPIPL eggs, they are collected and raised by professional zookeepers that come from across the country. The eggs are incubated and raised using techniques that are not only specific to GLPIPL but are based on protocols used by aviaries across the world. Every day the eggs are weighed and candled to check for development. Piping Plover eggs lose an average of 14-18% weight by the time of hatch, and keepers have to keep a close eye on weight loss in order to insure eggs have the best success at hatching. While keepers eagerly await the chicks’ arrival, pens and holding areas are set up in preparation. Once the chicks have reached fledgling age (~28 days) they are then released into the wild at an area that has been deemed safe (comparatively to the other sites) and with wild chicks that are of similar age.

 

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