Friday, February 13, 2009

Pink Pigeon Awaits Mate

The Des Moines Register reports that a Mauritius pink pigeon recently joined the birds at Blank Park Zoo's indoor Discovery Center. As one of 44 Pink Pigeon's in the US, she will shortly be given a mate to try and increase the worldwide population of less than 500 birds.
"We are waiting for the (species survival plan) to identify a male that can come to Blank Park," said Kevin Drees, Blank Park Zoo director of animal care and conservation. "We don't know where that bird is yet. Hopefully it exists."

Mauritius' population of pink pigeons numbered fewer than 25 in the mid-1970s due to loss of habitat and non-native predators, like feral cats. A captive breeding program was initiated on the island.
The Blank Park Zoo article on the bird's arrival says...
In 1976 the wild population was down to less than 25 pink pigeons. That same year a captive breeding program was established which involved zoos and other private organizations. The most resent census concluded there just over 250 in the wild.
Plus, a reminder that I'm giving away a second-hand hardback 1977 edition (ex-library copy) of Gerald Durrell's book "Golden Bats and Pink Pigeons". It's a very entertaining account of Durrell's trip to Mauritius, Round Island and Rodrigues to capture various creatures for his captive breeding programs. The book has a little water damage stain, but other than that, it's in very good reading condition, and is full of many nice illustrations and a section of black & white photographic plates.

If anyone would like a chance to read it now that I'm done with it, please simply enter your name in this ContestMachine widget below. Or, if you know someone else who may be interested, do let them know, or just post this competition to your favorite social network(s). US readers only please. Contest closes 02/19/09 09:47 PM

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