A rare species of albatross found injured more than 2500km from New Zealand
Haven owner Chrissy Jefferson says it’s the first of this species she’s encountered in her 54 years of bird rescue work in the Bay.
“They’re from the Antipodes Islands, down near the Antarctic. It’s very rare for them to be found here.
“It’s even stranger he was found on the road; if he’d turned up on the beach, it wouldn’t have been as strange.”
Sooty, with his “vicious” temper, is more than twice the size of a domestic cat and has an estimated two-metre wingspan.
“He’s a very attractive bird.”
Initially taken to ARRC Wildlife Centre, Sooty was passed on to Chrissy, who says he was in “very poor condition” being dehydrated, full of worms and starved.
Sooty is also eating about 24 fish per day. While he initially needed food forced down his throat, Chrissy says he’s now swallowing on his own.
The next step will be to make sure he is waterproofed – a must before he’s released.
“You just can’t take them to the beach and let him go. Because he’s not going in the water and not cleaning himself, he’s not waterproof.
“I’m trying to get a new pool; with albatross they need deeper water to get them waterproof.”