As regular CFZ-watchers will know, for some time Corinna has been doing a column for Animals & Men and a regular segment on On The Track... particularly about out-of-place birds and rare vagrants. There seem to be more and more bird stories from all over the world hitting the news these days so, to make room for them all - and to give them all equal and worthy coverage - she has set up this new blog to cover all things feathery and Fortean.

Thursday, 30 April 2015

Bryan’s Shearwater is confirmed breeding in Japan’s Ogasawara Islands

News is now in of the confirmation of breeding by the Critically Endangered shearwater with an incubating bird being discovered on Higashijima Island in the Ogasawaras, as described below by the Mainichi Japan of 25 March.

"A team of scientists has confirmed a nesting site of an endangered seabird species once thought to have gone extinct on the Ogasawara island chain, it has been learned -- the first time a nesting site of the species has ever been discovered.

The species, "Bryan's Shearwater," whose body length ranges between 27 and 30 centimeters, was believed to have gone extinct after it was last seen on Midway Atoll in 1991. Scientists conducted DNA testing on seabirds found on the Ogasawara Islands -- which have been recognized as a UNESCO world natural heritage site -- between 1997 and 2011, as their features matched those of the Bryan's Shearwater.

In 2012, it was confirmed that the birds were indeed members of the Bryan's Shearwater species. The Ministry of the Environment subsequently included the birds in the Red List as a critically endangered "IA" species.

In the latest discovery, scientists including Kazuto Kawakami, a senior researcher at the Forestry and Forest Products Research Institute, in Tsukuba, Ibaraki Prefecture, went ashore on several uninhabited islands of the Ogasawaras during the night, and searched for the rare bird by observing its high-pitched cry.

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