A family of Northern royal albatross nesting on the Otago Peninsula have become internet stars thanks to a 24-7 live web cam set up by the Department of Conservation.
The Department launched the #royalcam at Taiaroa Head — the world’s only mainland Albatross colony — today. The camera is trained on the nest of a chick born just last week, who will be tended to by both parents over the coming months.
“We are thrilled to share the life history of these awesome seabirds with the rest of New Zealand and the world,” said DOC’s threatened species ambassador Nicola Toki.
“Few people in the world have the chance to get this close to a nesting albatross chick. It’s quite amazing to look right into the nest to see the chick’s new beginning.”
According to DOC: The web cam will film the chick over the next eight months. Highlights may include the part both parents play in raising the chick, DOC rangers monitoring and caring for the chick, and challenges it is likely to face such as extremes of weather, vulnerability to predators and pests and reliance on its parents to provide it enough food to sustain it throughout winter.
The digital insight into the day-to-day life of the albatross has been covered in New Zealand media. Examples include:
Yahoo NZ News: DOC puts a young chick on camera
Stuff.co.nz: Smile! You’re on albatross nestcam
Otago Daily Times: ‘Nest-cam’ trained on albatross chick
3 News: It’s a bird’s life: The fluff, the feathers and the feeding
Newstalk ZB: DOC unveils 24 hour albatross cam