Hawaiian Airlines is transporting seabirds and their eggs to San Diego on their route to Isla Guadalupe, a Mexican island, to assist safeguard them and their eggs. Rising sea levels are threatening the survival of black-footed albatross eggs.
Hawaiian Airlines is helping to save a local seabird species by transporting chicks and eggs to a safer location. HA has carried this particular cargo for the past two years in collaboration with Pacific Rim Conservation, since the birds face the threat of increasing sea levels.
The black-footed albatross, also known as Kaupu in Hawaii, are big seabirds that can be found mostly in Papahnaumokukea, a protected maritime region that spans 1,510,000 km2.
On Midway Atoll, their eggs are in risk of being carried away by the sea, prompting conservationists to step in. San Diego was used to deliver the chicks and eggs to the Mexican island of Isla Guadalupe.
Many hatched and unhatched chicks are "destined to drown" if they stay on Midway, according to Julio Hernández Montoya, a conservation biologist with Island Ecology and Conservation Group.
Over the last two years, Hawaiian Airlines has carried out similar flights, carrying roughly 70 chicks and eggs to safer ground.
To guarantee the chicks and eggs were safe during the voyage, the crew created custom-built incubators and padded boxes.
The strategy appears to have worked, as 53 of 57 eggs hatched and nine of twelve babies survived after landing on Isla Guadalupe. On their new island home, the surviving birds are now caring for the freshly hatched babies.