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The 2012 cranes first few days - an illustrated guide...

 


1. The egg is 'pipped' ie the chick has pushed its beak through and made a hole.  The chick can now take up to 24 hours to get out of the egg, where it has been developing for the last 28-30 days. 



2. The chick is out! A wonderful moment.  The chick is wet and exhausted but after an hour or so it is soon up on its feet.  The hatched chick is then moved to large plastic tank for the next few days.



3. In the tank, the chick has a supply of feed and water, and a dummy crane head to indicate where the food and water is.  At this stage the chicks are not self-feeding though, and feed is given by a spoon attached to the beak of a dummy head.



4. After a few days, the young chick is moved into its coop.  To make it feel safe in its new, much larger environment, a roll of cardboard is used to form a temporary wall.  This is removed after a few days. As in the tank, the chick has a supply of feed and water and a heat.


 


5. The chick is growing fast and is ready for its first move into the outside world.  The door to its coop is opened up into a turfed run.



6. The young birds can be quite nervous at first - but most are incredibly excited to be outside and start to forage for insects almost immediately.  There first walks in the larger exercise enclosure are real moments to treasure.



7. The chicks will have daily walks and feeds from now on during the rearing phase.  They are still too young to socialize with other chicks as they are very aggressive.... although you wouldnt think it to look at them.



all together now..... ahh.........

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Damon’s role is to act as the hub of the project - making sure everyone involved knows what is going on and that it is all running smoothly. He is also responsible for project community awareness work in Somerset, construction of the release enclosure, and running the post release monitoring work in Somerset.  Damon works alongside the RSPB reserve teams in Somerset.