Oldest Wild Bird in World Returns to Midway: Wisdom

The Midway Atoll National Wildlife Refuge and Battle of Midway National Memorial refuge officials report that Wisdom is back! She is the oldest known wild bird in the world. First banded in 1956, when they put her age at 5 years old minimum, she is now over 64 years old.

This beautiful old lady was sighted on November 19. After mating, she’s gone out again to forage and eat, but should be back soon to lay an egg. Officials think this will be at least her 37th egg/hatchling. If Wisdom hadn’t returned, it wouldn’t have been a surprise because often Laysan albatrosses take a year off here and there. Wisdom hasn’t take a break since at least 2007.

Find more at Wisdom’s Facebook page, run by the National Memorial staff.

Oldest Bird Returns for 2015-16 Breeding Season

In a recent blog post on the USFWS Pacific Region Tumbler, the Deputy Refuge Manager says:

“Wisdom left soon after mating but we expect her back any day now to lay her egg,” noted Deputy Refuge Manager, Bret Wolfe. “It is very humbling to think that she has been visiting Midway for at least 64 years. Navy sailors and their families likely walked by her not knowing she could possibly be rearing a chick over 50 years later. She represents a connection to Midway’s past as well as embodying our hope for the future.”

Wisdom, the Midway Albatross, November 25, 2015. The oldest wild bird in the world has survived another year and returned to Midway Island for another breeding season. | MimsHouse.com
Notice the red leg band with the letters ZZZ. This special colorful band allows officials to locate Wisdom easily. Photo by Kiah Walker, Midway Atoll National Wildlife Refuge and Battle of Midway National Memorial volunteer.

Read more of Wisdom’s story: The Oldest Bird in the World at 64+ Years Old

Wisdom, the Midway Albatross | Oldest Wild Bird in the World survives another year. | Mims House

1 Comment

  1. My students will be thrilled to hear the news! Thanks for sharing!

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