On April 29 a baby condor chick was hatched at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park. Now, we all have the opportunity to name the chick by participating in a vote. Voting is being conducted online here from now until July 20.
There are five names in the running, all taken from the Kumeyaay American Indian Chumash language. They are:
- Antiki = “Recover”
- Likuu = “Large”
- Saxipaka = “Once upon a time”
- Su’nan = “Continue”
- Ush’anti = “Receive”
Since her hatching, the little condor has been followed around the world on the San Diego Zoo Safari Park’s condor cam. Shortly after hatching the chick was placed in the care of foster parents, two adult condors, named Sulu and Towich. Officials and staff members believe there is a great chance that this chick will be released into the wild and live her life like other condors who have been born in captivity, and then introduced into the wild of California, Arizona and Mexico. Upwards of 180 condors have been born at the park and set free as part of the program of breeding the endangered state birds starting in 1982.
The condors are the biggest birds that possess flight in all of North America. They have been cherished and respected by the Native peoples of the continent for thousands of years. Great power and mystical symbolism are attached to the birds. The condors are the legendary Thunderbirds of Native American religion and culture. They were thought of as the source of thunder, due to the beating of their large powerful wings.
Beautiful to see in flight, their expansive wings soar on the warm air currents, allowing the birds to stay in flight for hours at a time. Condors, being vultures, make their meals from dead game, including cattle, sheep, deer, rabbits, fish and rodents. They are part of the natural clean-up of the landscape. Like other scavengers, they prevent the spread of disease from rotting carcasses and with their large size and appetites, are a valuable resource in the wild. Bringing the birds back from the brink of extinction is one of the most important contributions the San Diego Zoo Safari Park can make to our California environment.
Don’t miss out on the chance to name our newest condor!