Keepers here at Wild Place Project have successfully hatched a Sumatran laughingthrush chick for the first time.
They have been hoping a pair of the birds would breed for the past few years but until now no eggs had hatched.
But last month keepers heard the sounds of a chick coming from the nest where the adult Sumatran laughingthrush had laid their eggs.
Keepers had a camera trained on the nest and several days later they spotted the tiny chick.
In the three weeks that followed they kept a close check on the parents and the chick to ensure all went well and that the parents were providing adequate food for the chick.
Now the Sumatran laughingthrush chick is making great progress, has already started to fly and will help boost this important breeding programme.
Joe Norman, Animal Team Leader at Wild Place Project, said: “It’s fantastic. We are all delighted.
“We have had a pair of them here for some time. We didn’t have any luck initially but we persevered with them and now we have been successful.”
Joe said it was important because in the wild the sumatran laughingthrush was listed as endangered on the International Union for the Conservation of Nature Red List.
They have suffered a serious decline on their native Indonesian island of Sumatra due to habitat loss and being hunted for the songbird trade. Some estimates suggest that there could be fewer than 10,000 left in the wild.
Joe said the captive population was small with just 97 birds in zoos across Europe so every hatching was significant.
The chick’s parents were both hand-reared, the male at Bristol Zoo Gardens and the female at Chester Zoo.
Joe said they were doing really well but they were currently being kept away from the public to ensure they concentrated on feeding their chick.
He added: “We are hoping the parents have become an established pair and will keep breeding in the coming years and help to ensure the future of this species.”