Say Haere rā to Atawhai! The Royal Albatross we have been following for many months now has finally fledged! After 230 days on land, Atawhai tested her wings and made a final, if not entirely steady lift off which will launch her on a non-stop journey of many tens of thousands of miles over the course of the next few years. She will not touch land until she returns to breed in the same colony, but will now head out on a 5600 mile journey from her birth place in New Zealand to the rich marine feeding grounds off the coast of South America. Find out more about Atawhai and her test flight here, and please watch the video of Atawhai as she leaves her hatching spot for good. Haere rā, goodbye, Atawhai!
Royal Albatross Atawhai Fledges; Screenshot of Cornell Lab of Ornithology NestCam