satellite view from PMNM
E komo mai; welcome! Midway Atoll National Wildlife Refuge is surrounded by a lei of foam in the middle of the North Pacific; it's a beautiful, special place.

Not only are there albatross on Midway, but many other interesting kinds of wildlife, both on the land and in the sea. Please enjoy exploring FOAM, an educational blog actively done while on Midway from May through August 2010. Posts are added from off-Midway, as information becomes available. If you're interested in a particular topic, please use the search box or the alphabetical list of "labels" along the left side of the blog page.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Auntie Moana Laal's Neighborhood

photo by Paul, the "Journalist on the Loose"
I did visit Laysan Albatross plot #L10 today, which is where Auntie Moana lives...but she wasn't there.  Her neighbors told me that she was away, getting food (squid and flying fish eggs) in the North Pacific.  She'll bring some of her catch back to feed her chick, and I hope to meet her then.  Check FOAM's "Midway Map" to see where Auntie's home is, and where I worked today. 

I and my fellow volunteers checked to see which LAAL (Laysan Albatross) chicks are healthy and still alive in plot # L10.  This is called "reproductive success."  The picture shows me with a stick that we use to nudge each chick into a standing position so that we can see the plastic band on its leg.  Each chick has a different number on its band; that's how we can tell which chick is which.  Doesn't the Laysan Albatross chick look healthy; see all its black, fluffy down...with just the beginning of its adult white feathers!

(By the way, that's the US Fish & Wildlife Refuge office right behind my hat.)


Birdhead said...

Very Cool Albatross. Thank you for posting the photos. Please tell us more:

So this year the reproductive success is high? How much longer until the chicks fledge? Have you noticed any boluses? Talk to you soon and thanks.

Barb said...

Hi Birdhead; thanks for your interest! I'll try to find answers to your questions about Laysan Albatross reproductive success and fledging time (when a young bird loses at last almost all of its downy feathers and gets strong body and flight feather) when I go to work tomorrow.

In the meantime I can say that Adam, my partner volunteer, collected 2 boluses today! Tomorrow I'll also try and get some bolus photos and tell you about our bolus protocol.

Right now perhaps check out the next post: Auntie Moana has given us a picture of a Laysan Albatross chick with its plastic band!