The Madagascar pochard is one of the rarest birds in the world - it was even believed to be extinct until 2006 when a small population was rediscovered. Today, however, the species is one step further from disappearing. According to Wildlife Extra News, 18 ducklings have hatched at a new facility in Madagascar, and their healthy growth can help give new life to the population, which is fewer than two dozen adult ducks.
The remaining wild Madagascar pochards are under continual study to determine how best to release future birds to ensure breeding success and population recovery. Part of the challenge to this species' survival will be finding a balance with the birds' food supply and local fishermen's needs. Hopefully, however, this first brood of ducklings will be the first of many forward steps to help save this critically endangered species.
Photo © Frank Vassen