Thursday, June 9, 2011

A first breeding record for Malta

Just hatched, taken by Ray Galea on the 30th May

(click on imge to enlarge)

One of the chicks yesterday that is around 10 days old

4 young Black-winged Stilts are currently running about in Ghadira nature reserve under the extremely protective eye of their parents. Not quite two weeks old yet they are growing fast, moving on their long legs fun to watch even better knowing that this is the first time the species have bred on the islands. Especially the male is chasing every thing that moves in their vicinity even the Little-ringed plovers that also breed in the reserve.

Everyone waited expectantly when the nest with four eggs was located and the pair took turns to incubate. On 29th May the first two hatched and their growth has been rapid since then! Only shows that creating new space for birds, the shelter and the right habitat the birds will move in! In the last years we have witnessed first breeding records of Little Grebe and Coot in Simar, as well as Little Bittern some time before that.

Now we can only hope that the four young stilts continue growing and that the breeding of this beautiful bird at Ghadira will become of regular occurrence!