For the second time ever in Australasia, an Auckland Zoo flamingo chick has hatched under the watchful eyes of its own proud parents and will continue to be raised within the flock.

The wee chick took its time breaking through the shell, which unfortunately caused the shell membrane to dry out a little bit, making it harder to crack. Luckily, Pridelands keeper David Crimp was on hand to assist, waiting anxiously like any soon to be parent!

Flamingo parents Lizzie and Chick took to their tiny hatchling straight away, from aiding with the hatching process, to bonding and showing excellent feeding behaviours. Flamingos produce a crop milk which the chicks feed on for a few months while their bills develop and they begin to transition onto the adult flamingo diet.


Our second flamingo chick has hatched!

It’s an exciting time at Auckland Zoo with two new chicks joining our flamingo flock!

January has proven to be a busy month for our Pridelands team, as this is the flamingo flock’s second new-born this month. Neil and Cheviot are the lucky parents to the first ever flamingo chick to hatch under natural circumstances in Australasia. Their chick is doing incredibly well, shadowing its parents and using its bill to play with the water.

Flamingos are a little hard to appropriately name, due to difficulties determining the gender until they are around six months old. At this age the female will stop growing and the males begin to tower over them. Sometimes this results in a female being called ‘Neil’, but Neil doesn’t seem to mind!

This is the first time the hand-reared flamingo flock has reliably shown such promising and encouraging paternal behaviours, such as incubating their eggs at night, inspiring our keepers to give the birds a chance to raise their own young. In the past the flamingo eggs were incubated in an artificial setting, and hand-reared by our keepers until they became independent and were ready to be accepted into the flock.