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Akron Zoo welcomes Andean condor chick

Posted by Elena Bell Wednesday, August 11, 2021 12:27:00 PM

For the first time in its history, an Andean condor chick has hatched at the Akron Zoo. The male chick hatched on Friday, July 23 and is doing well. His parents are the zoo’s two Andean condors, Grock and Carlotta.

The chick is being hand-raised in the zoo’s animal hospital by the animal and vet care teams. The egg was pulled for incubation due to Grock and Carlotta’s history of accidentally crushing eggs. As the chick gets older, staff will use a condor hand puppet for feedings and social interactions. 

The Andean condor is listed as vulnerable to extinction by the IUCN Red List. Populations are decreasing due to the species’ low reproductive rate, human conflict and competition from invasive species, such as black vultures. 

Andean condors are native to the Andes Mountains in South America. They are the largest flying bird in the world, weighing 20-30 pounds and measuring 4 feet tall. An adult condor’s wingspan is 10-12 feet wide. 

This chick hatched through a breeding recommendation from the Andean Condor Species Survival Plan (SSP), which is a scientifically managed breeding program that promotes genetic diversity in endangered species. The Akron Zoo participates in 46 SSPs as an accredited facility through the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA).

Because the chick is being hand-raised, the chick is unable to make a public debut at this time. The zoo plans to share updates through their various social media channels. Parents Grock and Carlotta remain in the zoo’s condor habitat daily.