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Toucan Chicks Growth Timeline (FIRST-EVER hatched at Tanganyika)

Wednesday, August 14 2019 9:45 AM
By Julia Stafford

We are extremely excited to introduce the FIRST-EVER toucan chicks born at Tanganyika Wildlife Park. 

The beautufil babies are toco toucans (the best-known species of toucan) and hatched on June 17, 2019 to first-time parents Sam (mother) and Teko (father). Their keepers have said that they have really done a wonderful job caring for the babies. Interestingly, toucan parents share nesting and rearing responsibilities. Sam and Teko have both switched turns sitting on the nest as well as feeding them. 

Toucan hatchlings take anywhere between 43-52 days to fledge, which means leave the nest. The first baby fledged on August 6 which was 50 days after hatching. The second baby fledged on August 8 at 52 days. Since then, they have been indoors as they figure out how to perch and fly. They are slowly getting more and more confident moving around their space. 

They explored outside for the first time on August 11 for about 10 minutes and then they stumbled back inside. The extreme heat also keeps them inside. 

If you've been to the park lately and haven's seen the adult toucans in their exhibit, it is becaue they have been inside being very good parents to their babies! Now that the babies are growing up, the parents are spending a little more time outside. 

Take a look at the timeline of photos below to see their growth and development through the weeks since their hatching. FYI, the blackish/blue specks on their beaks are from the blackberries and blueberries they've been eating! ;) 

June 24 (one week after hatching)

June 28 (significantly larger just 11 days after hatch)

July 1 (beginning to show signs of growing feathers)

 

July 5 (2.5 weeks old)

July 14 (feathers have emerged!)

July 14 (backside feathers)

July 18 (one month old)

July 27 (fully-feathered)

August 8 (starting to look more like toucans)

August 8 (both have left the nest and perched... staying indoors only)

August 11 (debating entering the outdoors for the first time)

August 11 (exploring outdoors - lasted about 10 mins due to the heat)

As you can see, toucans are born with a dull color and a much smaller beak that grows along with their physical development until they reach that bright, vibrant color that the adults have. 

Below, is video-timeline of the chicks' development from the day of their birth through their first day outside. You may notice the third egg in the clip dated June 17. It’s possible that the egg was cracked or not fertile which is a common natural occurence. 

Big shout out to bird keeper, Sarah, for capturing and sharing photos and videos throughout their stages of development!


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