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The Hoodie Story at Moggs Creek (Part 2) – well, our champion little bird did it!

February 7 eventually came, and everyone who had been involved in supporting our single Hoodie parent with its chicks for the last 35 days was just so excited when the news spread that our juvenile birds had taken off and flown over the ocean with their proud parent. This is the first record of a single parent Hooded Plover raising a chick to maturity, and our valiant little bird managed two! Unfortunately one of the chicks went missing overnight on January 27. We have no proof that a fox was the culprit, but there were many fox prints around the shelter boxes the next morning, and the parent was very cautious in guarding the two remaining chicks.

Parent Hoodie

Photo: Geoff Gates

We had many sleepless nights over the next 10 days – would the fox return and take the other two chicks? There were certainly many more fox prints in the area during that time, but with help from GORCC who carried out some fox control with funding support from the Surf Coast Shire, our brave little bird somehow managed to protect its young family.

The two juveniles were banded by Birdlife Australia on February 13 and are now proudly wearing silver bands and orange flags marked VM and MH.

Hoodie family

Photo: Lachlan Manley

We look forward to following their progress in the years to come. Presently they are still in the area, and already the parent seems to be enjoying the company of other adult Hoodies. Who can blame it as it has given selflessly to its offspring for such a long time?

There are so many people to thank and they know who they are, but a big thank-you must go to the community, the locals, and the visitors who took our little birds into their hearts and watched their progress as they grew from tiny chicks to strong juveniles.

Margaret MacDonald