Lonely Planet Writer

Happy ending in Patagonia for rare smuggled falcon chick

A rare albino peregrine falcon egg that was stolen from its nest in Chile has hatched a chick which has been returned to a nest on a Patagonian cliff face.

Rare peregrine falcon chick hatches after smuggling drama.
Rare peregrine falcon chick hatches after smuggling drama. Image by Frankzed / CC BY 2.0

The egg was one of four that were seized from a convicted wildlife trafficker at an airport in Brazil; the other three eggs failed to hatch. The trafficker was headed to Dubai, where the eggs would have gone for $80,000 on the black market, before an anonymous caller tipped off Chilean authorities. The surviving chick was sent to a nursery for birds of prey in Santiago, where it spent three weeks in the nest of two peregrine falcons before being transported back to the wild. When authorities returned to check on the chick after three weeks, they witnessed the mother feeding it and covering it with her wing – a sign that she had accepted it into the nest.

Read more: theguardian.com