Wisdom, World’s Oldest Wild Bird, Seen Courting Again After Losing Mate Of 60 Years

Wisdom, World’s Oldest Wild Bird, Seen Courting Again After Losing Mate Of 60 Years

After three long years without the appearance of her mate, Wisdom, the world’s oldest known wild bird, appears to have hung up her metaphorical mourning outfit and put her best dancing shoes back on, after being spotted bopping about with potential new mates.

Believed to have hatched in 1951, Wisdom the Layson albatross is believed to be the world’s oldest known wild bird, now around 72 to 73 years old. She’s thought to have spent a decent chunk of that time with long-time mate Akeakamai – Hawaiian for “lover of wisdom”  – with the two even welcoming a chick as Wisdom reached the age of 70.

But in 2021, Akeakamai was nowhere to be found when Wisdom returned to their home in Midway Atoll National Wildlife Refuge for the breeding season. This was unusual, as males typically return to the site before females do. Then came 2022 and 2023 and still no sign of Akeakamai. At this point, the likely conclusion was that he had died.

For most of us, just the idea of jumping back into the world of dating after a long-term relationship is enough to make us shiver in horror, let alone off the back of a loss and being a septuagenarian.

This doesn’t seem to factor in for albatrosses though, as a social media post from the US Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) announced that Wisdom had been seen taking part in courtship dances with potential new suitors.

Laysan albatrosses tend to arrive in Midway Atoll around November for the nesting season, usually laying their eggs in December. Though that makes Wisdom a little late to the game this time around, that doesn’t seem to have put her off practicing her flirting technique.

“She was still actively courting other birds in March,” said Jonathan Plissner, the USFWS biologist who snapped the pictures of Wisdom, though in an earlier social media post, said that he doesn’t expect her to nest this year.

Clearly, Wisdom is at the very least attempting to get back to business, but we know some of you might have an important question about that: don’t albatrosses mate for life?

Generally, yes. Their monogamy is arguably one of their most well-known characteristics. That being said, circumstances can change.

“At least 70 years old, we believe Wisdom has had other mates,” said USFWS biologist Dr Beth Flint in a statement. “Though albatross mate for life, they may find new partners if necessary – for example if they outlive their first mate.”

That seems to be the case for Wisdom, but for some other albatross species, climate change might end up pushing some couples towards an altogether different situation – divorce.

Source link



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Most Popular

Social Media

Get The Latest Updates

Subscribe To Our Weekly Newsletter

No spam, notifications only about new products, updates.