World's Oldest Wild Bird Lays Another Egg... Aged Almost 70
There's no slowing down for this mum, who is still raising chicks well into her sixties.
Wisdom the Laysan albatross returned home to her nesting site on the island Midway Atoll in November, and biologists have now confirmed she has laid an egg.
"Forget the partridge in the pear tree, Wisdom is the bird of the season!" the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said.
She and her mate Akeakamai have been returning to the isolated island 2,100 kilometres northwest of Honolulu and producing an egg every year since 2006.
Over the years, Wisdom had reared 36 chicks, biologists on the island believe.
Wisdom is still producing eggs with chicks, but not every year, the USFWS said.
"One of her banded chicks actually showed up near her nest last year. Which was pretty exciting. That chick had hatched in 2001," it said on Twitter.
While researchers can't give her an exact age, she was first tagged as an adult bird in 1956 -- making her at least 68-years-old.
She was one of 8,400 birds to tagged that year, and it wasn't until nearly 46 years later she was given her name, when long-time Midway researcher Chandler Robbin checked her tag, only to realise he had been the original tagger all those years ago.
The USFWS said "meticulous record keeping" meant biologists have been able to confirm Wisdom is the same bird that was tagged back in 1956.
Albatross' spend 90 percent of their lives at sea, flying for days on end and resting on the waves, but they return to their birthplace almost every year.
From October to December, Albatrosses return and descend upon the island transforming the landscape into a sea of birds. Image: USFWS.
Midway Atoll is home to almost three million seabirds -- 1.2 million of those being albatrosses.
Feature Image: USFWS