On Sep 21, 2012, RosinaBloom from Waihi,
New Zealand (Zone 1) wrote:
Gannet chicks are born blind, naked and helpless. Within a month they have learned new behaviours and are covered in down. One parent minds them while the other dives for fish. At 12 weeks they are speckled juveniles. They wander around the colony exercising their wings for their first ever flight in 2 weeks time. By week 15 the young migrate to Australia, more than 2000 kms away. Nature provides the reserves and instincts to survive. The parents leave the colony to fish in NZ waters. Only about 25% of the young return to the same nest site to breed, after spending several years across the Tasman. Older birds take over the centre of the colony, newcomers get the outer edge.