Home News Albatross hilariously faceplants at New Zealand sanctuary

Albatross hilariously faceplants at New Zealand sanctuary

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What a dodo!

An albatross soared to unexpected fame when it was caught on camera making a hilariously klutzy crash-landing at a wildlife sanctuary in New Zealand.

The wild footage opens on a feathery four-week-old chick gazing out to sea, before the clumsy adult bird tries to land next to it — but does a faceplant and a somersaults onto its back at the Taiaroa Head Nature Reserve.

The video takes a slapstick-comedy turn as the clumsy critter lays on its back and furiously pedals air with its feet while trying to flip itself over, according to footage tweeted by the sanctuary Saturday.

Eventually, the bird stands up and shakes off the embarrassment, according to footage captured by the reserve’s live-streamed Royal Cam.

Crash landings are common among juvenile albatrosses, but this birdbrain had little excuse, the reserve’s tourism manager told The Guardian.

This bird is likely an 11 to 12-year-old adult who “would have had plenty of time to learn to land properly,” Hoani Langsbury told the outlet, adding the tumble was probably due to a change in wind.

Albatrosses in the area generally fly around the headland for 15 minutes then “flare their wings like a parachute and drop out of the sky."
Albatrosses in the area generally fly around the headland for 15 minutes then “flare their wings like a parachute and drop out of the sky.”
RoyalAlbatrossCam/Department of

The footage caused some bird lovers to squawk with joy and others to crack jokes on Twitter.

“Sea legs, as they say,” one observer quipped as another user chirped, “What a dorky bird.”

“Me, downhill snow skiing at the bottom of the hill,” another tweeted.

This bird is likely an 11 to 12-year-old adult who “would have had plenty of time to learn to land properly,” Hoani Langsbury said.
This bird is likely an 11 to 12-year-old adult who “would have had plenty of time to learn to land properly,” Hoani Langsbury said.
RoyalAlbatrossCam/Department of

The nature reserve’s tweet had garnered more than 6,600 likes and 2,300 retweets by Wednesday.

Albatrosses in the area generally fly around the headland for 15 minutes then “flare their wings like a parachute and drop out of the sky” — a form “controlled crashing” that sometimes involves them tumbling “roly-poly on to the ground,” Langsbury said.



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