First Spoon-billed Sandpiper chicks hatch in captivity

The first Spoon-billed Sandpiper chicks have hatched in a captive breeding scheme to bring the bird back from the brink of extinction. Conservationists said 17 chicks have hatched from eggs taken from breeding grounds in Chukotka, in the far east of Russia, in an emergency bid to establish a captive population for eventual release to the wild. The team of experts led by staff at the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust (WWT) and Birds Russia is attempting to save the critically endangered sandpiper, one of the world’s rarest birds, whose numbers had fallen to an estimated 120-200 pairs in the wild by 2009.

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