Wisdom, the Laysan Albatross who makes her home-nest on Midway Atoll, has just hatched out another healthy baby chick. She is the oldest known bird in the world, having been banded when she was about five years old. It is estimated that she has raised over 36 chicks. One of her chicks even survived the March 11, 2011 tsunami that resulted from the disastrous earthquake in Japan.
Wisdom’s story is beautifully told in a book by Darcy Pattison, “Wisdom, the Midway Albatross.” The tsunami on March 11 rushed toward Midway Atoll where Wisdom and thousands of other birds were nesting. About 110,000 baby chick died along with over 2,000 adult birds, but somehow Wisdom and her chick survived.
An albatross has many survival challenges. It must avoid being eaten by sharks as it swoops down to the ocean to scoop up tasty squid. It has to wisely avoid eating the many pieces of plastic floating on the waves. It also has to avoid getting tangled in fishing lines or nets. People can do much to help these beautiful birds survive. We can use safe fishing techniques, clean up the oceans and protect the albatross nesting areas.
We hope that Wisdom will continue to have a long and amazing life. She is an inspiration to us all!