January 09, 2020

Animal care is at the heart of what we do every day at the Zoo. Our curators and zoological managers from each animal unit selected their favorite 2019 accomplishment for animal care.

In 2019, the Bird staff had several notable hatches and training successes.

We successfully fledged four Guam kingfisher chicks. This species is extinct in the wild and is supported only in the care of zoos like the Saint Louis Zoo.

We also had a successful pair of puffin foster parents at Penguin & Puffin Coast. A horned puffin chick was raised by a pair of tufted puffins and was the first offspring fledged from the horned puffin biological parents.

Our cinereous vulture pair is being trained to target, station and move into a large crate voluntarily. This training makes weighing the birds and occasional vet checks safer and less stressful for them. We are also participating in a multi-zoo hormone study for cinereous vultures. This data will help tell us more about hormone fluctuations leading up to egg lay, and it will hopefully increase breeding success of this near-threatened species. - Amanda Hausman, Zoological Manager of Birds