March 2nd 8:30 AM | After an extended hatching process our Chick has finally fully emerged from the egg!
Jeremy had first observed "dimpling" on the egg during a nest check 2 days prior on February 28th (learn more) indicating the start of the hatching process and by midday on March 1st a small "pip" hole had been observed by the Cornell Team monitoring the streaming video. At 7pm as the pip hole was slowly getting larger the male parent barged in to take over incubation from the female who had been on duty since February 19th and after a few exchanges she retuned out to sea to feed and re-energize.
Throughout the long night as the Bermuda and Cornell Teams watched along with numerous other followers from around the world, the chick in the egg and the father went through cycles of sleeping and bursts of activity as the chick tried to break free with the father nibbling at the edges of the hole to help it get out.
As dawn approached the Team was starting to get concerned that the chick was taking too long to emerge as once the first pip has been made the egg and chick start dehydrating and if the process takes too long this can prove fatal.
Two years ago a similar situation had occurred and thanks to the CahowCam Jeremy was able to track exactly how long the process was taking and then intervened when it became apparent that the chick might not survive. In that case he used sterilized surgical snips to very careful enlarge and weaken the edges around the existing pip hole which allowed the chick to successfully hatch after a few hours, fledging out to sea normally 3 months later.
Therefore on the morning of the 2nd, despite the building seas from incoming winter storm Riley he was preparing for a similar rescue mission out to Nonsuch (as the incoming weather would have restricted access to the island for the following few days making urgent intervention impossible) however fortunately at 8:30 AM Bermuda time the chick was finally seen fully emerging from the egg!