WATCH: uShaka to provide shelter, care to abandoned flamingo chicks
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DURBAN - uShaka Marine World is now a temporary home to 250 lesser flamingo chicks rescued by the Kimberly SPCA and others from the Kamfers Dam near the Northern Cape town.
Director Tony McEwan leapt into action the moment the SPCA contacted him for assistance.
The Kimberly SPCA needed accredited facilities capable of hand-
rearing 250 of the thousands of abandoned chicks.
uShaka Marine World said it was well placed to assist with the rescue efforts as it had helped in the Treasure Oil Spill in 2000, during which it cared for hundreds of penguin chicks prior to release. Although uShaka has not housed flamingos in the past, it said that resident vet Francois Lampen has experience with the species and was confident that the animal care team was qualified to assist.
“If these chicks are not rescued, they will all die. We know that many may still die. Saving them at this stage will not be easy, but if we can at least save a few, we will be helping this species,” said Lampen.
About 15000 lesser flamingos nest at the Kamfers Dam. However, due to a combination of issues, the dam is drying up and the chicks have been abandoned. The chicks, which are all just days old, are being sent to suitable facilities around the country.
“I am delighted uShaka agreed to provide a home for 250 of the stranded chicks as I have every confidence in their ability to offer extraordinary care,” said the SPCA’s flamingo project co-ordinator, Linja Allen.